Planning board approves site plan for Nascentia Health
ROME — The city Planning Board awarded a negative declaration on the Site Environmental Quality Review and approval of the site plan for Nascentia Health to build 55 senior apartments at the former Beeches Inn & Conference Center campus on Turin Road during a special meeting Tuesday.
During the Planning Board meeting on Nov. 1, the state-required SEQR and site plan were put on hold because Nascentia was waiting for feedback on the proposed project from the state Department of Transportation.
Plans consist of redevelopment of the hotel portion of the former Beeches campus and a two-story addition. The current addition at the back of the building would be demolished to prepare for the planned building and other additions, as well as parking. There will be 55 units total built at 7900 Turin Road — 15 within the existing structure and 40 within the proposed addition.
Michael Malda, project manager with Holmes King Kallquist & Associates Architects, Syracuse, explained that the plan includes the renovation of the existing inn for 55 one-bedroom units to provide “affordable” housing for seniors. The front portion of the existing inn will remain in place, with a portion of the back being removed and renovated along with a building addition.
The project will also include a community room, a wellness room (workout facility), office space for on-site property management and maintenance, a computer lab and on-site laundry facilities.
Outdoor amenities include walking trails, connecting sidewalks, adequate lighting, outdoor patios, benches and seating, bicycle parking, 88 car parking spaces including carport units and electric car charging stations. Housekeeping, meals, health care services, and transportation will be available for a fee for each service.
The site plan review says that the project will use a model called “aging in place.” The goal is to address the social determinants of health so that seniors can “age in place” and not have to move to a higher level of care.
Anticipated funding sources for the project include low-income housing tax credits, senior housing funds from the state Homes and Community Renewal, HUD 202 Funds, historic tax credits, and private financing by Nascentia.
Malda said the grounds will be maintained by Nascentia groundskeepers and staff and that the parking area will include a fire lane and drive-in space for any possible emergency responses.
In accordance with State Historic Preservation Office requirements, the original facade of the building will remain unchanged, and the ponds will remain “untouched,” Malda said. There will also be no runoff into the ponds.
The new structure will be about 62,000 square feet and include a whole second floor. A caretaker’s cottage from the original estate will remain and is not part of the project. The existing front of the building will look as it does today, but it will be cleaned and repainted, Malda added.
The funding application for the project is due Dec. 6, and the review period should take through March. Malda anticipates hearing from Homes and Community Renewal by mid-March or early April about whether the project has been approved for funding.
A negative declaration and approval of the site plan were recommended by the city Department of Community & Economic Development, and both were unanimously approved by the board.
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