Green Mountain College
green mountain college

Former Green Mountain College campus is on the auction block

May 1, 2020
The 155-acre campus in Poultney, Vt., closed in 2019.

The former Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vt., is going on the auction block.

VT Digger reports that the 155-acre property has  been on the market since the college's leaders closed the four-year liberal arts college in the spring 2019.

“There’s been a substantial amount of interest, but there hasn’t been anybody who has stepped up and said ‘We want to take it, we’re willing to pay X amount of money, and we have the financing to support that,'” says Thomas Bailey, a college trustee and project manager with Verdolino & Lowey, an accounting firm that oversees the property.

The firm has hired Maltz Auctions to solicit “stalking horse” bids – initial bids that set a minimum price – for an auction contemplated in July. 

“The last thing anybody wants is an empty campus with a fence around it," Bailey says. "What we want is somebody to buy it and to maintain it. And the best way we could think to do that is to have someone like Maltz go out and beat the bushes with their substantial contacts to get people in who are willing to purchase the property."

[FROM 2019: Green Mountain College says it is closing after 185 years]

Maltz's auction materials tout the school’s “classic New England dormitory buildings” as well as its 400-seat auditorium, fine arts studios and galleries, working farm, guest residences and campus-wide biomass heating system.

Vermont has seen four colleges shutter in the last two years, and their campuses have proved tough to sell. The only purchase agreement announced thus far – a $4.9 million deal for Southern Vermont College’s main campus in Bennington – fell apart in January.

Green Mountain College is still on the hook for a federal loan worth nearly $20 million. The school failed to make a payment that was due this April, and is now technically in default on the loan, according to Bailey.

Bailey says it’s unclear at this point what the next steps will be if the auction can’t secure a buyer.

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