Orchard Park community and senior center up for discussion ahead of Tuesday vote

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) — On November 8th, voters in Orchard Park will be deciding on more than just the presidential race. They’ll also be voting on whether or not to build a new recreation and senior center.

Orchard Park Councilman Michael Sherry said, “There’s certainly is a lot of need within our community, that’s why it’s been out there for over 10 years. But we just felt it would be better than three people in a room making this decision.”

Town Board members say the current senior center too small for Orchard Park’s growing population. If this proposal passes, the current one on Linwood Avenue will be sold. The new one will be built at Brush Mountain Park.

The new building will also include a community center and a gym. The whole project could cost up to 16 million dollars, and taxpayers would be on the hook for up to 30 years.

Sherry said, “If we did build this community activity center we would sell the current senior center which is valued at almost $600k, all of those funds and others that we might locate will be applied to the build and taken off.”

If approved by voters, construction is expected to begin in 2018.The project would raise property taxes up to 47 cents for every thousand dollars of assessed home value. That means an extra 3 to 5 dollars per month in tax for a median valued orchard park home.

Cost is a concern, but so is the project’s design. Some people at the meeting wanted to know more about partitioning between seniors and younger generations at the proposed facility.

“The preliminary plans took all of that into consideration so that the seniors have their own wing in this complex,” said Sherry.

If you were not able to make it out to the Thursday meeting, another meeting will be held on November 5th at 10 am in the Town Board room.

For more information on the proposal, go to: http://orchardparkny.org/content/Generic/View/13:field=documents;/content/Documents/File/2859.pdf

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