Glassberg letter: Sell Fort River land to developers

Sept 30 2016 –

Town can sell land to offset projects

As an Amherst resident and taxpayer for over 20 years, I read the Sept. 15 article “Town Eyes $100M in Building Projects” with a great deal of interest.

Leaving aside the question of whether the town needs to build a new elementary school, a new addition to the library, a new fire station and a new Department of Public Works headquarters all at the same time, it occurred to me that some of the expense associated with these projects could be offset by the town selling off valuable land that it no longer needs.

Specifically, once the new elementary school is built, the Fort River School site could be sold to commercial developers. Because the property is already on a bus route and a short bike ride from the University of Massachusetts, it would be an appropriate location for an apartment complex, among other uses.

Why put another public building, such as a firehouse or DPW headquarters, there when the town could build on less commercially valuable sites?

David Glassberg