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August 3, 2021 - 11:27am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, Le Roy Village Board, Mercy Grove, Le Roy Country Club.

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Cold hard facts about a stormwater retention plan apparently will determine the fate of a Batavia businessman’s proposal to build a 60-unit senior residential complex off East Avenue in the Village of Le Roy.

“I’m looking for scientific information – I don’t want anybody’s opinion – that can tell me that the project is going to have no impact upon groundwater or, actually, will improve the situation that the residents are feeling now, including the (Le Roy) golf course,” said Le Roy Mayor Greg Rogers this morning.

“I still believe there is a need for that type of housing in the community … but the main thing is that the water issue has to be a non-issue.”

Rogers presided over a meeting on Monday night that was attended by about 50 village residents at the Town of Le Roy courtroom. The purpose of the meeting was for the board to conduct the State Environmental Quality Review for the project.

After the first two sections of the long form were completed, the SEQR then was put on hold, Rogers said.

When asked if the water issue was the reason for tabling it, he said “it had more to do with the overall project.”

When asked if the site plan submitted by Eric Biscaro, owner of Armor Building Supply in Batavia, was in jeopardy, Rogers said, “I wouldn’t say that, it’s just that we’re in the information gathering process.”

“I’ve always contended that the stormwater part of it – the stormwater plan -- was the deal breaker on the whole thing. If any of the properties get more stormwater than they’re getting now, that’s a deal breaker. Right now, for me, it’s all about the water.”

If photos provided by LeRoyan Tom Frew are any indication, standing water in yards in the Poplar Lane and Orchard Drive area as well as nearby Mercy Grove and Le Roy Country Club is a major concern that needs to be addressed.

Frew, a Poplar Lane resident, has been outspoken in his opposition to the project, claiming that the 30 duplex patio home rentals on a 20-acre parcel that runs east of East Avenue are not compatible with the neighborhood. He also is against the village spending money to improve East Avenue and is concerned about the increase in traffic.

Biscaro’s plan, estimated to cost around $9 million, also calls for the development and sale of eight single-family home building lots along an extension of that street.

Contacted this morning, Frew said that a heavy rainfall two weeks ago caused a foot and a half to two feet of standing water behind a neighbor’s home near the intersection of Poplar and Orchard (see photo above).

“That that took a few days to flow out through a buried pipe that goes down parallel with Orchard Drive and dumps into a creek which flows over to Mercy Grove and the golf course,’ he said. “The golf course had two holes under water.”

Frew said turbidity is another issue.

“You could only see about six inches down in the two feet of water, and (Mercy Grove and Le Roy Country Club owner) Jim Gomborone said that when the water recedes on the golf course, he has suspended solids all along the lower shore line that came from that water,” he added.

Frew agreed with Rogers that water “seems to be the tiebreaker.”

“He (Biscaro) will have to build a retention pond to hold and contain it, and then slowly release the water,” he said. “That was where the rubber met the road at the meeting last night.”

Rogers said the developer is on board with village officials when it comes to providing necessary and accurate information relating to water runoff.

“His engineer had sent the water remediation plan to CPL (Clark Patterson Lee) for review, but CPL didn’t feel that they had enough information at that point and time,” Roger said. “So, we’re going to do our due diligence among Biscaro, Clark Patterson and the DEC (NYS Department of Environmental Conservation) to get accurate information on the water remediation plan.”

The mayor said the next step is a public hearing at 7 p.m. Aug. 18 at the Memorial Auditorium on Trigon Park in the village. The public hearing originally was to be held at Le Roy High School but the school is not available, Rogers said.

“After that and if all the information is in regarding the water, then we can go back and adopt Section 3 -- if that’s where it leads us,” he said.

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Photo at top: Poplar Lane resident Gerry Robinson in standing water behind his home. Photos at bottom: Standing water at Mercy Grove and Le Roy Country Club following a recent steady rainfall. Submitted photos.

May 3, 2021 - 11:54am

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As a member of the Town/Village of Le Roy Planning Board, Tom Frew supports the development of new housing throughout the municipality – as long as he sees the project as a good fit with the surrounding neighborhood.

When looking at a venture proposed by Batavia developer Eric Biscaro to construct 30 duplex patio home rentals for seniors on a 20-acre parcel east of East Avenue in the village, however, Frew said that he has some concerns.

“I am not against development back there, as long as they were a continuation of residences like the rest of this neighborhood,” Frew said on Saturday as he took this reporter on a tour of the area. Frew’s home on Poplar Lane is located about 500 feet north of the development site.

Frew said that others living on Poplar Lane, East Avenue and Orchard Drive agree with him, prompting him to distribute a flyer to all residents of those streets to attend a public hearing on the matter at 7 p.m. May 19 at the Village of Le Roy Hall at 3 W. Main St.

Biscaro recently said that the project would be larger than his Clinton Crossings Adult Community on Clinton Street in the Town of Batavia. The Le Roy plan also includes blocking out eight building lots along the west perimeter of the site to be made available for purchase.

In order to make this happen, the area would have to be rezoned from Residential to Planned Unit Development, action that already has been recommended for approval (with modifications) by the Genesee County Planning Board.

Frew believes that a senior housing complex near an upper-end residential neighborhood is comparing apples to oranges.

“The south end of East Avenue intersects with Poplar Lane, and then Poplar Lane intersects with Orchard Drive, and the homes on these streets are valued in the $150,000 to $250,000 range – they’re all in the same ballpark,” Frew said. “So, now we’re taking property that is zoned Residential and asking to zone it as a PUD.

“If somebody was coming in here and wanted to put a development in – let’s say 15 houses of a couple hundred thousand dollars each, I wouldn’t have an issue. But I have an issue with the effect could be on the value of my home and the additional traffic. There’s only one outlet now, although I know that the county said they’d like to see the development of South Avenue.”

Frew, who said he was the lone dissenter at a recent planning board meeting, advised that South Avenue would be a new street that would run to South Street.

“Their plan is, and this is from the mayor (Greg Rogers) himself, is for the time being, they will gravel it and put a chain link fence up, which the emergency services people will have a key to,” Frew said.

The Batavian reached out to Rogers and Biscaro for comment.

Frew also said he is uneasy about the additional traffic created by the development – predicting an increase of 70 to 100 more vehicles “in a quiet, residential area” with the only access to Route 5 via East Avenue.

He also said he believes the village is endorsing the project and is committed to installing the necessary infrastructure.

“There is 800 feet of new road, new storm sewers, new sanitary sewers, new water, new gas, all those utilities,” Frew said. “The village is committed to run down the length of East Avenue to give Eric access – and Eric will take care of backing his development – but Eric has got no skin in the game regarding the cost.”

Frew estimates the cost of those utilities plus curbing would be around $700,000.

“I’m looking at 30 buildings at let’s say $200,000 each,” he said. “They’re not fancy. The revenue that they would generate from those buildings versus the cost of that infrastructure will blow your mind. It would be an eigh-t to 10-year payback to get even, and I don’t see that as a good investment of my tax dollars.”

Contacted this morning, Le Roy entrepreneur Jim Gomborone said his “main concern” is the potential for flooding on his Mercy Grove and Le Roy Country Club properties along East Main Street from a stream that flows through the area.

“When they had a four-acre school up there, I got extremely flooded. We couldn’t handle three inches of rain. So, you saw the impact with just four acres,” he said. “Twenty acres, with roads and houses and all that other stuff, probably 70 percent of it will be buildings and roads. I’ve got a strong suspicion that I’m not going to be able to handle the water from it.”

Gomborone also said the village’s decision to fund the infrastructure is a disservice to taxpayers.

“Why are we spending village taxpayers’ money for a guy that who’s in business for himself, running rental units? He’s going to have 60 rental units back there,” he said. “As far as I’m concerned, there’s going to be a substantial amount of rent from that thing, and I don’t think the taxpayers should pay someone in private enterprise for infrastructure. I wouldn’t ask them to pave my driveway.”

Previous: Biscaro proposes Clinton Crossings-type adult community for East Avenue in the Village of Le Roy.

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Photo at top: Poplar Lane resident Tom Frew holds site plan as he stands on the north end of a 20-acre parcel proposed for a senior housing project off East Avenue in the Village of Le Roy. Photo at bottom: The end of East Avenue that would be expanded and paved to create a new street to connect to South Street. Photos by Mike Pettinella.

August 14, 2018 - 3:50pm

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Monday night at Genesee Community College, the Genesee Symphony Orchestra rehearsed for Sunday's third annual Summer Serenade.
 
The garden party event is a combined fund-raising event for the United Way's Backpack Program and the Genesee Symphony Orchestra.
 
It will be Aug. 19th from 3:30-6:30 p.m. at the Mercy Grove Event Center, 7758 E. Main Road (Route 5) in Le Roy.
 
During the three-hour Garden Party, guests can enjoy hors-d'oeuvres, grazing stations, beer, wine, and a cash bar, all catered by the Le Roy Country Club. 
 
The Genesee Symphony Orchestra will play a concert from 4:45 to 5:30 p.m. under a large white tent, which is set up off the back patio of Mercy Grove. The stately mansion was built by Donald Woodward in 1927 and sets amid beautifully landscaped grounds with expansive views.
 
Le Roy Historian Lynne Belluscio will conduct mansion tours during the Garden Party.
 
Bright-colored, garden-party attire recommended.
 
The orchestra will feature "Summer Songs" with their concertmaster, GSO Conductor S. Shade Zajac. Kiran Rajamani is the featured violin soloist. Some other musical surprises will also be played.
 
Theresa DeMars, an account manager with Lawley Insurance, chairs the event for United Way.
 
Tickets to support this combined fundraiser are $75 per person; $40 of that ticket cost may be claimed as a donation to these two nonprofit organizations.  
 
Tickets may be purchased at the door or as follows:
  1. Le Roy Country Club
  2. Roxy's Music Store
  3. United Way or GSO Board Members
  4. Online at: www.uwrochester.org/summer serenade
  5. www.geneseesymphony.com

(Photos by Howard Owens.)

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August 12, 2018 - 3:00pm

The third annual Summer Serenade is a combined fund-raising event for the United Way's Backpack Program and the Genesee Symphony Orchestra.
 
The Garden Party will be held Sunday, Aug. 19th, from 3:30-6:30 p.m. at the Mercy Grove Event Center, 7758 E. Main Road (Route 5) in Le Roy.
 
During the three-hour Garden Party, guests can enjoy hors-d'oeuvres, grazing stations, beer, wine, and a cash bar, all catered by the Le Roy Country Club. 
 
The Genesee Symphony Orchestra will play a concert from 4:45 to 5:30 p.m. under a large white tent, which is set up off the back patio of Mercy Grove. The stately mansion was built by Donald Woodward in 1927 and sets amid beautifully landscaped grounds with expansive views.
 
Le Roy Historian Lynne Belluscio will conduct mansion tours during the Garden Party.
 
Bright-colored, garden-party attire recommended.
 
The orchestra will feature "Summer Songs" with their Concertmaster. Kiran Rajamani is the featured violin soloist. Some other musical surprises will also be played.
 
Theresa DeMars, an account manager with Lawley Insurance, chairs the event for United Way.
 
Tickets to support this combined fundraiser are $75 per person; $40 of that ticket cost may be claimed as a donation to these two nonprofit organizations.  
 
Tickets may be purchased at the door or as follows:
  1. Le Roy Country Club
  2. Roxy's Music Store
  3. United Way or GSO Board Members
  4. Online at: www.uwrochester.org/summer serenade
  5. www.geneseesymphony.com
We hope to see all of our wonderful United Way and GSO supporters at Summer Serenade lll next Sunday!
August 16, 2016 - 7:01pm

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Shade Zajac makes his official debut Sunday as the full-time conductor of the Genesee Symphony Orchestra in a special performance being sponsored by the United Way at Mercy Grove in Le Roy.

Zajac previously conducted the orchestra last season as part of an audition process for the musical director's position with the GSO and was appointed by the GSO board earlier this year.

Mercy Grove is Genesee County's newest event facility and will be a beautiful setting for this special performance.

Tickets are $75 per person and proceeds benefit the United Way and the Genesee Symphony Orchestra.

Party attire is suggested. The event starts at 3:30 p.m. There will be hors d'oeuvres, grazing stations and a cash bar. The GSO performance, "Summer Serenade," begins at 4:45.  

Tickets are available through GSO's website, or at Bank of Castile in Batavia and Le Roy, Roxy's Music, the United Way and GO ART!

Photos are from Monday's rehearsal.

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May 21, 2016 - 2:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Mercy Grove, James Gomborone, Le Roy Rotary, Le Roy, news.

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A Friday evening fundraiser organized by the Le Roy Rotary Club was also the opening of a new events center at Mercy Grove, the former priests home on a large estate at 7758 E. Main Road.

Owner James Gomborone has been renovating the facility for months and was finally ready to give it a first public showing for the Rotary event.

Mercy Grove will be a location for upscale weddings, community events, corporate retreats, retirement parties and rehearsal dinners, said manager Barbie Gozelski.

By next year, renovations on the second floor should be completed, and those rooms will be guest rooms and serve as a possible setting for a bed and breakfast.  Cabins on the 53-acre property will serve, when renovated, as bridal suites or guest rooms. 

The facility is just across the road from the Le Roy Country Club, which Gomborone also owns.

"Graze to Raise" was hosted by Le Roy Rotary as a fundraiser for the R.E.A. Milne Scholarship Fund.

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