PITTSFORD, N.Y. (WROC) — The long-vacant space on the Erie Canal in Pittsford, known as “75 Monroe,” will now officially be home to “Westport Crossing.”
The Pittsford Village Historic Preservation Board voted on a motion to approve last week, and Developer Mark IV made the announcement in a press release Tuesday.
Mark IV says the space will be “mixed-use,” and will have canal access. The developer also said in a statement that the approved version of the project will have more greenspace, fewer residential units, a restaurant, and more underground parking than the original plan.
Pittsford Village Mayor Alysa Plummer says there are still some small criteria to be met following the vote to approve by the board — and Mark IV still needs a building permit — but the village and developer have come a long way.
“I can tell you that where the project did start out many years ago, and where it’s ended up in terms of just even mass and scale for our village has been reduced by almost 35%,” said Plummer.
Increased access to the canal is also promised by the development, with “a network of public sidewalks.” Planting of native trees is on the table as well, whether on its on their property, or at the main entrance, which according to former mayor Bob Corby, is Pittsford Village property. The space was contaminated by oil storage units, and in 2015 was designed as a Brownfield Remediation site, and Mark IV was paid to decontaminate the site.
Both Corby and Plummer say that one of the biggest reasons this finally went through was a change in architecture, which they say now fits the Village better.
“I think it does a much better job reflecting the historic quasi-agricultural industrial heritage of the canal in Pittsford,” Corby said.
“We are thrilled to receive a unanimous decision in favor (of) our final approval from the Village of Pittsford,” said Christopher DiMarzo, President of Mark IV Enterprises in a statement. “We are confident that the Village residents will consider this an asset and a new landmark.”
The decade-and-a-half project has been caught up in lawsuits, and has resistance from a local group called Friends of Pittsford Village.
Corby said in a phone interview today that he hopes the new development can help the Village, while acknowledging the hard work of the Village Historical Preservation Board.
“It’s done,” he said. “I have always supported the project. And I believe that the zoning change that was made while I was mayor was the right choice… I think in the end, the end result will be positive, I hope for the community and for the developer.”
“I hope that even if the villagers maybe don’t always agree with what has been resolved for this project, that they understand that so much work went in to bring it to the best possible result that we could get,” Plummer said, adding that the village is now debt-free following the series of lawsuits involved in the delay.
The developer did not provide a timeline for the start or completion of the project.
We have reached out to the Friends of Pittsford Village, and have not received a reply.
Check back with News 8 WROC as we continue to update this developing story.