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Canterbury Woods Gates Circle senior housing moves forward

Pantano & Associates

Construction may have started on the first building on Buffalo's Gates Circle, where Millard Fillmore Hospital used to loom over traffic, but there are a lot of unresolved issues.

Canterbury Woods has two teams working on its new senior housing: the construction team building the complex at Gates Circle and the legal team fighting with Developer TM Montante over what will go on the site - and the neighbors are watching.

Tuesday, Buffalo Common Councilmembers approved the creation of a special zoning district for the entire property. This will control what goes on the site.

Council President Darius Pridgen says there's a carefully-crafted set of rules. "What the residents said is: We don't want to wake up and there is a Walmart over there or a TJ Maxx. We want a walkable community. And, so we delivered on that," he said.

"Now, did we deliver on every hair? We could split hairs for the next three years. But, sooner or later, you've got to lock and load and you've got to move on. And, there have been multiple meetings with block clubs, hearings," said Pridgen.

The Council retains a hammer on any development plans, because there still must be building permits for everything from a proposed extension of Lancaster Avenue to individual building. The developers also want to buy the city parking ramp, which used to serve the hospital. The Council also would have to sign off on that.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.