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Federal Officials Praise Tornado Recovery Work

This apartment house in Springfield MA damaged by the June 1 2011 tornado was later demolished

Federal and local officials Monday highlighted the rebuilding and recovery that occurred since a powerful tornado tore into western Massachusetts four years ago.

   Top officials with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development got a first- hand look at the new homes built, businesses re-opened, public parks renovated, and trees planted along the 6.2 mile path the tornado carved through several neighborhoods in Springfield.  

  Acting regional HUD director Kristine Foye, who was in Springfield a few days after the tornado, marveled at how far the city has come in four years.

    "I think it is incredible what they've done so far," she said Monday.

    HUD gave the city a $22 million disaster recovery grant. 

    Springfield officials credited teamwork and thoughtful planning for the success, but said there is still more rebuilding to do.

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston. He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester. Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011. Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.