CHD eyes Old Lyman Road site for group home 

  • South Hadley Town Hall GAZETTE STAFF

Staff Writer
Published: 2/11/2019 5:11:29 PM

SOUTH HADLEY — A currently vacant lot on Old Lyman Road may become the location of an educational group home for those in recovery from addiction, according to the Center for Human Development.

The proposed residential facility, which will be situated behind Big Y if approved, will serve up to 16 people at a time who are in recovery for substance abuse conditions and co-occurring mental health disorders.

The need for such a facility is “tremendous,” according to Jim Goodwin, president and CEO of Center for Human Development (CHD), a Springfield-based social services organization.

“The demand is extreme, and there’s an awful lot going on in the area,” Goodwin said. “We anticipate the program would be full almost immediately, as most addiction programs are at this point.”

CHD is currently in the application process for gaining approval to build the 6,000- to 8,000-square-feet facility.

The town’s Planning Board will hold a public hearing on the project on Feb. 25 at 7 p.m. in the Select Board meeting room of Town Hall. 

CHD operates three similar facilities in Pioneer Valley, including Grace House in Northampton, Two Rivers in Greenfield and the Goodwin House in Chicopee.

The recovery program typically lasts about 90 days, and is often a next step for people who have recently completed detox and related clinical services.

While detox focuses on the physiological factors of addiction, Goodwin said that the recovery center aims to facilitate psychological and attitude changes that help residents achieve long-term relapse prevention through working with psychiatric staff and other clinicians, as well as outside services.

Residents also learn about job placement, housing, vocational skills and other ways to support themselves once leaving the program. 

“The minute someone comes in the door,” Goodwin said, “you’re already planning their leaving with the goal of ‘How will your life be different when you leave this facility?’”

The South Hadley facility will be strictly for adults, unlike Grace House and Two Rivers, which allow residents to bring along their children.

CHD hopes to have a temporary facility set up in East Longmeadow by the end of March or early April, according to Goodwin. Operations at the temporary facility will then be moved to South Hadley once the project is completed in about nine months to a year. 

South Hadley was chosen for the facility as a central location between the Northampton, Springfield and Greenfield areas, as well as attributes of the chosen lot, which is situated in a wooded area across from a residential neighborhood. 

The nearby residential area is “pretty well buffered” by the adjacent Big Y and Department of Public Works yard, according to Goodwin.

“It’s kind of a nice spot that doesn't fully integrate into a neighborhood, but at the same time is close enough to a neighborhood that it’s home and seems comfortable to people,” he said.

Goodwin added that recovery centers are “common in neighborhoods now and for the most part fit right in.”

Jacquelyn Voghel can be reached at



Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

115 Conz Street
Northampton, MA 01061


Copyright © 2019 by H.S. Gere & Sons, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy