New affordable housing on the East Side was approved by the Planning Board on Tuesday, while a new liquor store at the Wegmans on Amherst Street was delayed.
Saving Grace Ministries plans a new two-story building on a vacant lot at 2017 Bailey Ave., near Doat Street, which will create eight affordable housing units.
The organization helps men transition from prison to the community, but this development will be available for rent to anyone who qualifies, said the Rev. Terry King, executive director.
The 6,000-square-foot building will be constructed on a vacant lot, and the design incorporated suggestions from the community, said developer David E. Pawlik.
King is involved with organizations that work with the homeless and said he saw a need for affordable housing in the neighborhood. Saving Grace Ministries owns several other properties around Bailey and Doat, including a former fire hall that serves as the organization’s offices.
Also Tuesday, Wegmans’ plan for a wine and liquor store at 601 Amherst St., on greenspace in front of its existing food store, was delayed for two weeks by the board following a 40-minute discussion, at the request of North Council Member Joseph Golombek.
Board members expressed a willingness to approve the project, a 15,000-square-foot retail space that Wegmans said it intends to lease to a wine or liquor store operator, but deferred to Golombek.
Through Council staff, Golombek told the board he would like Wegmans to meet again with representatives of the Black Rock Riverside Good Neighbor Planning Alliance.
Two of Wegmans’ neighbors said the traffic around the site makes getting in and out of residential driveways difficult, and also that the parking lot entrance closer to Elmwood Avenue, which lacks a traffic signal, is dangerous for pedestrians.
The neighborhood would like to see a more urban design, with two or three stories, and allow for a mixed use, said Mark Kubiniec, president of the Grant-Amherst Business Association.
Wegmans has changed the design to make it appear that it houses several stores and is two stories, though the company’s plan is to rent it out to a single tenant, and the 29-foot-high building will actually be one floor, said Dan Aken, Wegmans manager of site development.
“I don’t know if we’ll ever get there, to satisfy everybody,” Aken said. “We’re a little stuck.”
Wegmans has made some other changes, such as reducing the parking lot from 30 to 18 spaces, at the request of the neighborhood, but has kept some elements the same.
The front door to the building will be on the east side of the building facing the parking lot, not on Amherst Street as Kubiniec and others have suggested.
“It doesn’t activate the street-front,” said Amherst Street resident Chris Ortloff.
In other Planning Board action Tuesday:
• Plans for a gas station and convenience store at 2516 Main St., near Fairfield Street, were approved with conditions.
• Changes that will make Bishop Timon-St. Jude High School, 601 McKinley Parkway, accessible to people with disabilities and an addition to the gym and auditorium were approved.
• A 284-square-foot addition to the kitchen at Tempo restaurant, 581 Delaware Ave., was approved. The addition will double the kitchen workspace at the rear of the building. Landscaping enhancements along an existing fence also are planned.
• Don Tequila, a Mexican restaurant planned for 73 Allen St., the site of the former K. Gallagher’s, was approved.
• The board recommended to the Common Council that zoning be changed to accommodate a hotel and conference space at 400 Forest Ave., for the Richardson Center Corp. The Council will hold a hearing on the zoning change on Tuesday.
• Two patios at Globe Market, at 1416 Hertel Ave. at the corner of North Park Avenue, were approved.