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‘Life after’ to be found for former Florence Grammar School

Situated on a 2.2-acre site at 140 Pine St., the two-story building is not to be confused with the smaller Florence Civic Center in Florence center.

The property served as an elementary school until enrollment dropped in 1991. It remained vacant until the city’s Recreation Department opened it as a youth and community center around 1994 under the Friends of Florence Community Center.

Space was leased to tenants during this time.

The property was turned back over to the School Department in 2002, which operated an alternative learning program in the building until about 2009, when that moved to Northampton High School.

The city acquired the property from the School Department and continued to lease space to a variety of tenants in the 30,565-square-foot building, which features a hardwood-floor auditorium.

Current leases for tenants expire in June.

City officials are scheduled to open sealed proposals for the sale of the Florence Community Center on Monday at 2 p.m.


Florence Community Center tenants wary of change

Thursday, May 16, 2013

NORTHAMPTON — Walking through the halls of the Florence Community Center on a weekday afternoon is a trip back in time into an old elementary school, with its retro sinks, tall windows and vinyl tiles. It is a deceptively quiet place, but former classrooms that once harbored energetic children are compact beehives of activity and sound. Small businesses, nonprofits, artisans …

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