Greenfield Police Department adding downtown substation

Greenfield acting Police Chief Todd Dodge talks with Maria Burge, who may help staff a substation for police to have a downtown presence at 205 Main St.

Greenfield acting Police Chief Todd Dodge talks with Maria Burge, who may help staff a substation for police to have a downtown presence at 205 Main St. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

Sgt. Todd Clark, Sgt. Jay Butynski and acting Chief Todd Dodge of the Greenfield Police Department inside 205 Main St., where they plan to open a substation for police to have a downtown presence.

Sgt. Todd Clark, Sgt. Jay Butynski and acting Chief Todd Dodge of the Greenfield Police Department inside 205 Main St., where they plan to open a substation for police to have a downtown presence. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

Police check out 205 Main St. in Greenfield, where they plan to open a substation for police to have a downtown presence.

Police check out 205 Main St. in Greenfield, where they plan to open a substation for police to have a downtown presence. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

By ANTHONY CAMMALLERI

Staff Writer

Published: 06-20-2024 4:58 PM

Modified: 06-20-2024 6:23 PM


GREENFIELD — In addition to its 321 High St. base, the Greenfield Police Department will have access to a new Main Street substation on July 1, marking a significant step in Mayor Ginny Desorgher’s efforts to increase the city’s downtown police presence.

Police officers gathered at the 205 Main St. station earlier this week to plan some of the renovations, which acting Police Chief Todd Dodge said will involve minor demolition, plumbing, electrical work, light carpentry, new flooring and painting. The space, leased from Larry Pfeffer, formerly housed Benny’s Organic Market and is about 150 square feet.

Greenfield Police published a Facebook post Wednesday calling for any skilled tradespeople who are willing to donate their time or resources to the station’s upgrades. The department wrote that it intends to turn the site into a “functional, vibrant and presentable downtown space.”

“Our plan is to put an actual report station in there for officers,” Dodge said. “People should be a touch away from contacting our dispatch center at that location.”

In an interview Thursday afternoon, Dodge clarified that the department sought voluntary help with the main intention of engaging the community. He added that the department will take on any labor and materials costs associated with upgrading the facility.

Desorgher said the station, in its first year, will cost approximately $12,350 in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding, a cost that she described as “a bargain of the ages.” Next year, funding for the station will be shifted to the Police Department’s budget.

The city, Desorgher said, will open the substation in response to significant community demand for more policing downtown.

“It was a very good deal for a presence downtown,” she said.

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The department’s new station will be staffed by two downtown officers, one of whom will be a new addition to the force. Dodge said the department hopes to also include a bicycle storage facility in the site’s upgrades so the city can increase its bicycle patrol units downtown.

Although the Police Department will be given access to the facility at the start of July, Dodge said the department’s move will be dependent on the speed of the renovations.

“I hope everybody has a minute to come take a look. We’re very proud of it. We’re very excited to introduce this new thing to the public and we’re getting on it,” Dodge said. “We created a subcommittee to attack this. I’m seeing a lot of energy and a lot of buy-in to get this thing up and running, so I’m hoping it’s going to happen sooner rather than later.”

Anthony Cammalleri can be reached at acammalleri@recorder.com or 413-930-4429.