Town moves to buy former apple packing house

by GEOFF FOX

Former Dillon packing house

Hancock officials have made an undisclosed offer to purchase the former Dillon packing house on the east end of Hancock to use for town equipment and material storage.

Town officials made the announcement during last Wednesday’s town meeting. Mayor Ralph Salvagno said he was unable to say what the cost of the building was because the town has not closed on the property and no date has been set for the closing.

An offer was made in late February for the building, Town Manager David Smith said Monday.

The purchase had not been discussed at public meetings until last week.

The town’s vehicles, equipment, and supplies would be stored in the former packing house.

Councilman Leo Murray had been a driving force to get a storage age in the park location cleaned up since last year.

“It’s been a struggle,” he said about finding a location to move the town’s materials and equipment.

Murray said he guarantees people wouldn’t see vehicles parked outside.

The building will be improved upon with cleaning and painting.

“It’ll be a nice looking place when you drive into Hancock,” Murray said. Signs on the building could include “Hancock Maintenance Shop” or naming it after Stanley Fulton, Sr.

The current location in the park will be turned back into part of the park.

Murray said there is an added benefit to having the building, as portions of it can be leased out and there have already been commitments leasing.

He said there are already two businesses leasing space in the building. He wouldn’t say which businesses those are.

Murray also said Hancock Little League has asked about using the upstairs of the building as a practice facility as well.

Murray said he and his fellow councilmen were excited when he found out the town was purchasing the building.

While Salvagno wouldn’t disclose the cost of the building to town taxpayers, Murray said the cost was far less than the cost to build a Public Works facility.

The 66,000 square foot building was built in the 1940s. The Hess brothers currently own the building, Smith said.

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