Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

April 24, 2013

Mount View buyer granted variance

BY JOE OLENICK
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — With support from the Town of Lockport, the Youngstown businessman who wants to turn Niagara County’s Mount View Health Facility into an assisted living facility just needs the OK from Albany.

David Tosetto said he is waiting for the final approval and a certificate of need from the state health department, something that could come at any time. 

Tosetto wants to turn Mount View into a 150-bed assisted living facility. No major physical changes are planned for the building, but work would include updating resident rooms, the HVAC system, boilers, bathrooms and fire alarms.

The Mount View building won’t change much because it matches Tosetto’s vision for an assisted living facility.

”It’s a great fit,” Tosetto said.

Tosetto went before the town zoning board on Tuesday asking for a variance. The Mount View property is zoned R-1, a residential zone, meaning an assisted living facility would not be permitted on the grounds.

But Mount View was constructed as a tuberculosis sanitarium in the 1930s. The building was then converted first into a hospital then a nursing home.

”Why is it zoned R-1, I’m not exactly sure,” Town IDA attorney Daniel Seaman informed the board.

The county closed Mount View at the end of 2007 and the building has been unused since. In July the county Legislature voted unanimously to sell the former county nursing home to Tosetto for $550,000.

The sale was contingent upon a number of factors, including the state health department’s OK for Tosetto to operate an adult home facility and the results of an asbestos report suggesting how much remediation would be needed to re-use the facility.

Each of Mount View’s 150 residents would have their own room, something that isn’t common with assisted living facilities, Tosetto said to the board. The facility would add $2 million in payroll to the local economy, employing 45 to 60 people. 

On Tuesday, the zoning board approved the variance for Mount View.

• Zoning board members also approved a variance for Yahoo’s planned expansion in the Town Industrial Development Agency Park.

The Internet company needed a variance for the height of the administrative center, one of three buildings coming in the expansion, as well as a maintenance building that does not meet the required 50-foot front set back requirement. The height of the center would be 64 feet, which exceeds the allowed 50-foot height limit. 

There will be a public hearing concerning a proposed IDA tax break for Yahoo at 9 a.m. Thursday at the town hall on Dysinger Road. The company is planning a $168 million, 320,000-square-foot expansion which would lead to 115 additional jobs.

Contact reporter Joe Olenick at 439-9222, ext. 6241 or follow him on Twitter @joeolenick.