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North Adams Receives One Response For Airport Restaurant
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
01:11AM / Friday, February 07, 2020
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The city has received only one response to operate an eatery at Harriman & West Airport.

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The city received only one response in its search for a restaurateur to operate a cafe at Harriman & West Airport.
 
Administrative Officer Michael Canales reported that one party responded to the request for proposals bid that closed at the end of January but was not concerned. 
 
"It is something you sometimes see," Canales said. "It is not really a setback. I think it would be a setback if we can't fine tune it to get a better response."
 
The city moved and renovated a former doctor's building on the airport campus to act as the new terminal and administrative building. The facility was renovated to house a restaurant overlooking the runway.
 
Canales reported at an Airport Commission meeting in January that he was not confident any responses would come in and although there was a lot of interest in the space before the RFP was released, virtually no one attended the pre-bid site visit.
 
The only response is currently under technical review and if it meets all the city standards it will go before the Airport Commission.
 
"If they don't like what they propose to do with the site, they don't have to go ahead with it," he said of the commissioners. "They still have complete control even if they relax the restrictions."
 
Last year, the commission only set one requirement on a potential restaurant: It must be open at least five days a week.
 
Canales indicated that the hours the commission set may have discouraged those interested.
 
He said this would not be a big deal to change if the commission were so inclined and re-release the RFP.
 
"You start with a vision of what you want but you realize that we aren't the ones who are going to invest in it," he said. "Maybe you let them come up with a proposal."
 
He added that the second time is often the charm.
 
"We see this is a lot where the first RFP goes out and you get a limited response and then the second one goes out," he said. "Johnson School was successful the second time around ... we have had that with other buildings."
 
The ongoing terminal project is essentially complete and the contractor is currently seeing out a punch list.
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