Deal in place to sell industrial lot to farm

NAUGATUCK — The borough has a deal in place to sell a lot that has been vacant since the Naugatuck Industrial Park was built.

The Board of Mayor and Burgesses Oct. 1 authorized Mayor N. Warren “Pete” Hess to sign an agreement to sell lot 3 — a 4.11 acre parcel — on Great Hill Road in the Naugatuck Industrial Park to Guardians Farm, LLC for $60,000. Hess expects to close on the sale within two months.

Guardians Farms raises and breeds Nigerian Dwarf goats, according to the farm’s website. The farm also sells goat milk, goat milk soap and goat milk lotion, yogurt, cheese, ice cream and more. David Buck, owner of Guardians Farms, told the board he has a cosmetic manufacturing license from the state.

Buck told the board he plans to build a 30-by-40-foot barn on the property to keep the goats. The barn will have welded wires to ensure the security of the goats, he said.

“The original plan was to have the barn, manufacturing space and a retail space on the property. After getting tons of different quotes, it’s just too expensive for us, as a farm, to do a manufacturing and a retail space there with all the concrete work, septic and everything,” Buck said.

Guardians Farms rents space in Prospect where its products are made.

“We don’t have a retail space right now. When this goes forward, we’re going to look into moving our manufacturing space to Naugatuck somewhere,” Buck said. “If there’s a possibility of doing a retail space in that space we find, we’d like to because that would help us offset the cost of having a rental space.”

The lot was appraised at about $165,000 last year. The hilly terrain of the lot has made it difficult to sell, according to officials. By selling the lot for less than the appraised value, Hess said it will get the property on the tax rolls for the first time.

“We would love to have them (Guardians Farms), the topography is difficult,” Naugatuck Economic Development Corporation President Ronald Pugliese said.

If the sale goes through, that will leave three more available lots with a challenging landscape and one has a vacant building on it in the industrial park, Pugliese said.

“What’s left is going to require some creativity and innovation. This lot and the other lots that are left have difficult topography,” Hess said. “We’re engaged in a process of trying to combine some of the lots with other lots to work with contractors to redo the topography to make them more buildable.”