Questions of whether senior center will be available for other uses
By Holly Crocco
The Putnam County Legislature’s Physical Services Committee approved an amendment to the Butterfield project lease to ensure the Office for Senior Resources will continue to offer transportation services for a senior center being constructed there if the lease is renewed or extended.
Legislator Carl Albano (R-Carmel) said the change had been requested by the Cold Spring Planning Board.
The county plans to lease 6,000 square feet of space in the Lahey Pavilion at the former Butterfield Hospital site in Cold Spring from Butterfield Realty for 15 years at a total cost of about $4.5 million, including rent, taxes, common area charges and costs associated with renovating the location.
At the committee meeting, Garrison resident Lithgow Osborne, who challenged Barbara Scuccimarra (R-Philipstown) for her seat in 2015, asked if the county will need to ask permission of the landlord to use the center for purposes other than a senior center, such as a community center.
Albano said the site has been established as a senior center, but the landlord is “receptive” to expanding usage.
“The Planning Board didn’t want it used for anything else,” Scuccimarra said. “They were concerned about the parking.” But, she added, “we’ve already spoken to Paul Guillaro, and he is receptive” to expanded programming in the space.
Osborne expressed frustration with what he sees as a lack of clarity in discussions of the lease.
“We’ve gotten so many versions,” he said. “I don’t need a conceptual idea. I need real schematics.”
Albano said that before detailed plans are made, the county wants to make sure the lease is finalized.
“Right now we have a conceptive plan and a very good idea of where it’s going,” said Albano. “And then we’re going to fine-tune it.”