Planners support credit union project, storage building for apple company

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 24 April 2014 at 12:00 am

Photo by Tom Rivers – Babcock Construction works on the roof of a former medical center that will become the new home for the Cobblestone Country Federal Credit Union at the corner of Route 31 and Hamilton Street. A drive-through will be at the back of the building in Albion.

ALBION – The Orleans County Planning Board supported the site plan and variances for the Cobblestone Country Federal Credit Union to move into former medical offices at the corner of Route 31 and Hamilton Street.

Cobblestone Country will renovate the site and add a drive-through to the back end of the building. The village ordinance requires five spaces at a drive-through for cars to be in line, but the Planning Board approved a variance to have space for up to three cars in a line. That will reduce some of the “stacking” in the line, which won’t be as high volume as a fast-food restaurant, said Ron Vendetti, Albion’s code enforcement officer.

He said the lot is a tight space, but village planning officials were able to push for 15 parking spaces, and also allow for the drive-through and traffic flow, Vendetti said during the meeting tonight.

Cobblestone Country has permission to use the same driveway entrance on 31 that is owned by Oak Orchard Health. That will be better for traffic safety than having two entrances right next to each other, county planning officials said.

The building is 2,547 square feet and village ordinance requires 25 parking spaces for a building that size.  The 15 spaces for the project actually add nine from the previous use.

Cobblestone Country will move its existing sign from 239 South Main St., a building next to COVA. The sign will be in the front lawn at the site on Route 31.

“We agree it’s a tight site,” Vendetti said. “We did our best to make the best of it.”

Orleans County planners also supported the site plan for the Lake Ridge Fruit Company to build a 5,766-square-foot storage warehouse on the south side of its complex at 14234 Ridge Rd. The new building won’t be refrigerated. It will be used to store pallets, cardboard and packing supplies, said John Russell, general manager.

The building would be directly behind existing buildings owned by Lake Ridge. However, it is 25 feet from the property line. The town used to have a 25-foot setback requirement but that was changed about a decade ago to 50 feet.

Lake Ridge would need a 25-foot variance to have the new building be in line with the others. Planning Board members didn’t vote on the variance. It left it to the Town of Gaines Zoning Boards of Appeals to make the ruling.

Jim Bensley, county senior planner, said the variance should only be considered after all options have been exhausted. Lake Ridge should reach out to the neighboring property owner, Circle R Farms, to see if it could acquire a 25-foot strip of land in Circle R’s apple orchard to meet the setback request, county planners decided.

One Planning Board member, Marty Busch of Medina, said the town should give Lake Ridge the variance. The 25-foot setback wouldn’t cause an adverse impact on Circle R and its orchard, Busch said.

Lake Ridge has recently added a new building for a packing line, and a new controlled-atmosphere storage facility.

“How many businesses do you know around here that are putting up buildings?” Busch said. “Hey, God bless them if they can do that.”