downtown Springfield

New England News
6:16 pm
Mon August 4, 2014

With Federal Highway Funding In Place, For Now, I-91 Project Moves Ahead

The I-91 viaduct, or elevated highway, in downtown Springfield, MA will be rehabilitated in what is expected to be a three-year $260 million project
Credit WAMC

Congress last week, before going on a five-week recess, approved a short-term bill to pay for highway and transit projects.  The temporary funding means the Massachusetts Department of Transportation will seek bids later this month for the rehabilitation of the Interstate 91 viaduct, or elevated highway, which runs through downtown Springfield.  The project is expected to cost $260 million and take three construction seasons to complete.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill got an update on the project today from MassDOT Highway Administrator Frank DePoala

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New England News
6:26 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

Springfield Unity Festival To Celebrate Diversity Through Song

Organizers of the Springfield Unity Festival announce details of the event in front of Symphony Hall. The co-founder York Mayo is at the microphone
Credit WAMC

Plans were announced today for a unity festival this fall in Springfield, Massachusetts. Organizers hope to bring together people from throughout western Massachusetts to highlight the region’s cultural, religious, racial, and age diversity. 

The theme of the festival, scheduled for mid-October, is the promotion of social integration through song.

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New England News
12:29 pm
Tue July 8, 2014

Funding Announced For Affordable Housing Projects In Massachusetts

Newly renovated apartment buildings in Springfield, MA that are part of a $75 five-year project involving 23 buildings with more than 300 apartments. The project is in the Outing Park Historic District
Credit WAMC

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick has announced nearly $84 million in funding for 24 affordable housing projects across the state. New housing in western Massachusetts includes projects in Springfield, Northampton, Greenfield, Williamstown, and Pittsfield.

Governor Patrick said the newly funded projects will create more than 1,300 apartments and over 2,000 construction jobs.  It is part of an economic development strategy that has seen his administration commit more than $1 billion to the creation of affordable housing in the last seven-and-a-half years.

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New England News
6:25 pm
Mon July 7, 2014

Massachusetts Law Targets Gas Leak Danger

A dog searches the rubble of a building destroyed by a natural gas explosion in Springfield, MA on Nov. 23, 2012
Credit SFD

A new law in Massachusetts sets a uniform standard for rating the severity of natural gas leaks and sets a timetable for making repairs.  Governor Deval Patrick publicized the new law at a ceremonial bill signing today in Springfield -- a city still scarred from a natural gas explosion two years ago.

The bill establishes natural gas leak classification standards. It requires the gas companies to repair the most dangerous leaks immediately and produce plans for the timely replacement of aging pipelines.  Repairs must be prioritized if the leak is detected in a school zone.

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New England News
12:33 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

Insurance Giant Creates Investment Fund To Support Springfield Entrepreneurs

One of the oldest and largest businesses in western Massachusetts has launched an initiative to help small start-up companies.  MassMutual has announced the creation of the Springfield Venture Fund. It is intended to serve as a catalyst for economic growth in the state’s third largest city.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Nick Fyntrilakis, vice president of  Community Responsibility at MassMutual.

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New England News
3:41 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

New TV Studios For Springfield Public Access Programmers

Public access television—famously skewered on Saturday Night Live and elsewhere—is no joke in one western Massachusetts community.

When the newly formed Focus Springfield Community Television officially unveiled a brand new $1 million state-of-the-art programming facility on the ground floor of one of the city’s most historic buildings, dozens of local dignitaries took part in the grand opening.

The region’s Congressman and the city’s mayor helped cut the ceremonial ribbon to open the 7,000- square foot center from which three public access channels originate.

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New England News
12:25 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

Fate Of Springfield Casino In Hands Of Massachusetts Voters

Credit MGM Springfield

When casinos were legalized in Massachusetts three years ago, the mayor of Springfield set off on a high-stakes bid to land a destination resort casino that could transform the city’s economically depressed downtown. Now, potentially within months of a groundbreaking for an $800 million casino, the project is in jeopardy. 

Springfield Chief Development Officer Kevin Kennedy says when he and Mayor Domenic Sarno first talked about the strategy for getting a casino built in the city, they told each other they would remain optimistic and prepared for whatever hurdles came along.

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New England News
6:17 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Springfield Parking Authority Gets New Director And Direction

Springfield Parking Authority Executive Director Mary McNally speaks in city hall after Mayor Domenic Sarno ( at right) announced her appointment. Springfield Chief Development Officer Kevin Kennedy stands next to the mayor.
Credit WAMC

An attorney and veteran of several municipal boards and commissions has been tapped to head the parking authority in Springfield, Massachusetts. The appointment comes as the city is on the verge of a parking space crunch. 

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno announced Friday the selection of Mary McNally as the new executive director of the Springfield Parking Authority.  He called her “eminently qualified” and said the appointment is part of a new direction at the authority.

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New England News
6:12 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

UMass Opens Springfield Center Campus Office

The welcome center at the UMass satellite campus in Springfield is now open to help enroll students for classes that start at the new campus in September
Credit WAMC

The University of Massachusetts opened its first satellite campus today.  The university is inviting people to sign up for classes that  start later this year in downtown Springfield.

University and city officials took part in a ribbon-cutting ceremony Monday -- with about 200 people looking on -- to mark the formal opening of the UMass Center at Springfield. 

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New England News
6:31 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

New Rules To Govern Food Trucks In The Works

Credit Wikimedia Commons

With the warm weather months ahead the city of Springfield, Massachusetts is looking to regulate food trucks and similar roadside vendors.  It is an issue many municipalities dealt with years ago, but it has so far eluded the state’s third-largest city.

   City councilors in Springfield are working on the final details of an ordinance that would replace an archaic law and unenforceable rules that currently apply to food trucks and similar vendors. City Councilor Tom Ashe said he is optimistic the issue will finally be resolved after years of discussion and setbacks

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