Rome Planning Board OK’s Starbucks, WellNow changes, Elks Lodge roof project | Daily Sentinel

2022-05-07 06:51:37 By : Ms. Nancy Chen

ROME — Site plan modifications for previously approved site plans for the WellNow urgent care facility and Starbucks coffee shop at 1790 Black River Blvd. were unanimously approved by the city Planning Board at its regular monthly meeting on Tuesday in Common Council Chambers of City Hall.

Three board members were in attendance: Chairman Mark Esposito, Vice-chairman Joseph Calandra and Karim Madmoune. Members David Smith and David Troutman were excused, but a majority vote was required to meet a quorum.

Project Engineer Kevin Bamann, representing Gymo Architecture, Engineering, Land Surveying, DPC, of Watertown, stated that the only changes to the originally approved site plan were for the Starbucks side of the site. The property size of the Starbucks and WellNow facility are each 0.78 acres of Mohawk Acres Plaza. The WellNow building will be approximately 4,375 square-feet, and Starbucks will be 1,988 square-feet.

Modifications to the Starbucks site include merging the drive-thru lanes into one exit before the crosswalk; modification of the southern entrance/exit to move north — removing two parking spaces along the eastern parking bay to accommodate the shifted entrance. Additional crosswalks have also been added.

Bamann said there were no changes to the WellNow site, other than where the curb/pavement ties into Starbucks.

The curb/pavement changes to the WellNow site, “were to make it fuse together” with Starbucks, Bamann said.

He said, “New crosswalks were added with handicap ramps to the site to allow easier pedestrian access from the parking areas. One will be on the Price Chopper (Market 32 store) site, and one to the front entrance of the building.”

As for the proposal to merging the drive-thru lanes into one, “It meshes better with the project anyway,” said Calandra. Bamann added that the exit/entrance got shifted 12 feet to accommodate that. The project engineer also said there are plans to include a grassy area between the Starbucks and WellNow buildings to add more green space.

“The changes are an improvement to safety,” said Calandra before making a motion to approve the site plan modifications, which were unanimously approved.

The board also heard representatives of the Benevolent Protective Order of the Elks Lodge #96 at 126 W. Liberty St., for a historic district opinion for a project at the building. Representatives of the lodge said they are looking to replace the roof or at least have it renovated in some way.

Lodge Cyber-Assistant Edward R. Seelig Sr. said a partial, but significant, roof replacement is necessary to preserve the structural integrity of the historic landmark, which is listed in the National Park Service Registry. The original building was built in 1836, and the Elks Lodge #96 took over the building in 1936, constructing two additions since.

In the application, Seelig stated the structure is located in the city’s Historic District, and designated Downtown Revitalization Initiative area, for which DRI Business Assistance Funding was awarded in the past for other improvements.

“The roof replacement is necessitated by recently observed internal leaks and includes predominately the south, east and west portions of the building, excluded is the copper roof at the rear,” the application stated.

The proposed action by the lodge is metal standing seam and asphalt roof replacement, predominately viewable at the south, east and west portions of the building. Roofing materials to be removed would be replaced with architectural-style shingles, where the final appearance of the roof would “slightly differ” from the current roof.

“The final proposed appearance would not, in the opinion of BPOE #96, conflict with neighboring or other property structures located within the City of Rome Historic District and DRI Target Area,” said the application, adding that architectural shingles would be the “most cost-effective and affordable” roofing materials for the lodge to pursue.

Seelig said the lodge had “several estimates” done on the roof work and in terms of the estimates, they ranged anywhere between approximately $150,000 (for copper) to more than $50,000.

Lodge Exalted Ruler John T. Bielby Jr. said the organization is looking into federal and state grants that could assist in paying for the work.

“We can do $50,000” to include asphalt shingles and for scraping and re-coating the metal roof, and putting a membrane and patch over the flat roof that’s not visible from the front of the building, “but we’re a volunteer organization and it is a big bite,” Bielby said. “We started doing fundraising and reached out to several federal and state agencies to see if we could get some kind of grant. It’s an old building, and there’s a lot of other interior work that needs to be done. We’re trying to do the best we can with what we’ve got.”

Calandra asked if colors for the asphalt shingles were discussed. The planning board had three options: to approve the recommendation, approve it with modifications, or deny it.

“Based on what we heard, I see a hardship in regards to putting $51,000 into the roof — they’re a not-for-profit organization and they’re not altering the structure, just putting a roof on,” said Calandra. “If they get a color dark enough” for the asphalt shingles “it’s not known if it’s made of metal or asphalt. For the flat roof, who knows what that was originally, and you can’t put metal on that if it’s flat.”

The vice-chairman then made a motion to recommend the asphalt roof for the lodge building and that the asphalt is “the most economical for that type of repair, with the condition it’s black or dark in color.”

The motion was unanimously approved.

• Seaboard Solar of Connecticut was to appear before the board for a tabled Site Environmental Quality Review request by Turin Road Solar, LLC for a 215-lot major subdivision to be located off Turin Road, but Chairman Mark Esposito said, “They were not ready to move forward.”

No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here

With the world getting back to a sense of normalcy, the nursing program at SUNY Polytechnic Institue is looking to get back to teaching the next generation of students. Lynne Longtin, DNP, RN, is the …

UTICA — The trial date for the Taberg brothers accused of attacking and killing their third brother has …

CAMDEN — A former Otsego County Sheriff’s deputy has pleaded guilty in Oneida County Court after his …

UTICA — A Utica man who settled an excessive force case against the City of Utica for $150,000 will …

UTICA — Mohawk Valley Community College’s Career Development Center will host Exploring Careers in …

TURIN — The South Lewis Middle School has recognized the following students for academic excellence …