BUFFALO, NY - Community leaders and elected officials gathered Tuesday to break ground on a big, new project in Buffalo.
Canterbury Woods Gates Circle will be built at the site of the old Millard Fillmore Hospital at Gates Circle. The hospital was knocked down with an implosion last October.
It made way for the planned six story structure which will have 53 independent living apartments for seniors as well as assisted living in the only urban located continuing care retirement community in the state. It's projected to have a $15 Million dollar economic impact with 25 to 30 potential employees.
There's already a waiting list for the apartments operated by the Canterbury Woods firm according to Canterbury Woods CEO Rob Wallace "These are the folks who have been a part of Buffalo for generations. And they are still vibrant to the city of Buffalo. And they want to be part of the evolution of the city of Buffalo."
With a projected fall 2017 completion date for that senior living building on a one point four acre plot, what about the remaining roughly five acres of the old hospital site
A spokesman for developer TM Montante says planning continues with potential commercial/retail elements like a market and fitness center. And more general residential units could be located in parts of the old hospital still standing. They date back to the 1920's and may have historic value.
Requests by neighborhood residents for exterior changes in the seniors apartment building were agreed to by Canterbury Woods.
But In public scoping meetings, some Lancaster Avenue Block club members questioned additional Gates Circle development. 2 on Your Side asked Mayor Byron Brown what he would say to residents with those concerns. Brown said "I would say to those residents that their involvement is critically important to us.
Listening to people and making adjustments as necessary to make sure that the members of our community are satisfied."
In addition to the retirement community, a grocery store, a health and wellness center, office space and small retail shops are expected to be built at Gates Circle as well.
The projected buildout for the entire six acre Gates Circle site is on a five to ten year timeline. That follows its purchase by developer TM Montante in 2013. Obviously other on - site development plans will be subject to city planning approval.