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July 9, 2021 - 9:24am

Truck traffic, prospect of deceleration lane prompt couple to say no to Great Lakes Cheese potential offer

posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, Great Lakes Cheese, Town of Le Roy, GCEDC.

After discussing the possibility of selling 2.8 acres of their property on Lake Street Road (Route 19) to Great Lakes Cheese, Chris and Gina Stella said they have decided to retain control of that parcel.

Speaking after Thursday night’s public hearing on rezoning 185 acres next to the Le Roy Food & Tech Park, Chris Stella said he was approached by a representative of the Genesee County Economic Development Center about selling some of his land.

“Joe Macaluso stopped over and said that Great Lakes Cheese might have some interest in the 2.8 acres, so I talked to my wife, Gina, about it,” Stella said. “He (Macaluso) said that they would offer the same thing that they we’re offering everybody else, but I’ll be honest with you, nobody wants it in their backyard – and I didn’t either.”

Stella said he didn’t blame other nearby property owners for entering into potential land deals with the Ohio-based manufacturer, which has been identified as inquiring into the Town of Le Roy site as a location for a new $500 million processing plant.

“But, do I want it? I never wanted it. We talked about it a little bit,” Stella added. “Their deal was … that they wanted to put up a berm to protect us from it, so we really didn’t have to see anything. But, my attorney actually got us a map of what they wanted to do, and I think the deal closer for us was that they wanted to put in a deceleration lane starting right in my front yard.”

(Town Supervisor James Farnholz said the deceleration lane topic is “conjecture” at this point, and that the state Department of Transportation would have the final say on traffic issues.)

Stella said different people have told him that anywhere from 85 to 120 trucks per day would come in and out of the plant, and that they run at all hours.

“All day and all night I’m going to be hearing Jake brakes,” he said. “That was a deal closer for us. At least if we have that 2.8 acres of land, we can kind of do what we want to do with it. They can do whatever they want. We decided to hold on to it.”

When asked how much was offered, he said, “They didn’t offer us anything. I heard that it was around $20,000 an acre, but I’m not sure about that. I heard that number floating around somewhere.”

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