Pownal man has plans for Greylock

120 acres eyed for recreation resort

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NORTH ADAMS, MASS. — A Pownal, Vermont, man with a passion for the outdoors wants to turn a 120-acre property near the summit of Mount Greylock into a one-of-a-kind recreational resort.

D. Foster Goodrich has submitted plans to the city that call for converting the residential property on Notch Road into a resort replete with "glamping" sites, camping sites, and a bed-and-breakfast in the main residence.

The property would serve as the gateway to outdoor recreation for guests, with the entrance to the Mount Greylock State Reservation nearby, and a host of opportunities for hiking, fishing and mountain biking.

"We have more opportunity for outdoor rec in Berkshire County than just about anywhere else, and it is completely undersold," said Goodrich, who is the founding partner of the resort.

The proposal will be reviewed by the Planning Board during its meeting at 6 p.m. Monday.

The resort, which has not yet been given a name, would employ 15 to 30 people from May through September and five to 10 people from October to April, according to the proposal.

The site also would host weddings, music events and offer limited food service.

The planning board documents also indicate the group's desire to link a network of hiking, mountain biking and walking trails to "complement existing trails in and around North Adams."

Development of the resort would occur over multiple phases.

"The first phase would involve turning the existing house into a common facility — which is more like a lodge — creating 30 'glamping' sites, a bath facility, and use the existing shop for ancillary retail to support the overall needs of our guests and the property," Goodrich said.

"Glamping" refers to a camping experience somewhere between the roughness of pitching a tent and sleeping on the ground, but short of a stay at a five-star hotel.

"We're looking to use nontraditional assets in a hospitality model," Goodrich said.

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To accommodate those guests, the plans indicate the resort would add to the property's existing infrastructure to handle additional water and wastewater demands.

The resort plans to have a minimal impact on the neighborhood, which is zoned residential.

"I'm very conscientious of the neighbors, and should the project go through, I will personally live on the property," Goodrich said.

And the type of guests who would be staying at the site, Goodrich added, are there to recreate — not to party.

"They like to minimize the impact that they leave," he said.

The property is fewer than 2 miles from the Appalachian Trail, 2.8 miles from downtown North Adams, and 4.5 miles from Williamstown.

"It's ideally located, out of the way," Goodrich said. "It's not fair to say that the property does not have neighbors — but not many."

The project is a year and a half in the making for Goodrich, who was bought out by his partners after working as president of School Guard Glass in Adams, a company that manufactures glass intended to withstand intrusion at schools.

Goodrich, a Williamstown native and resident of Pownal, Vt., decided to combine his love of the outdoors and his background in construction and development to create an outdoor resort.

"This is the culmination of a lifetime of travel and interest in outdoor activities," Goodrich said.

He explored potential sites all over the country and landed not far from home.

"In all of that, the feedback and what makes the most sense is to start your business model close to home in a way that you can touch it and feel it and be around it to make sure you nurture it to success," Goodrich said.

Adam Shanks can be reached at ashanks@berkshireeagle.com, at @EagleAdamShanks on Twitter, or 413-629-4517.


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