Finally, a Senior Citizen Center?

Construction could begin before summer

By Michael Turton

Now that the ink has dried on the final amendment to the lease between Putnam County and developer Paul Guillaro, County Legislator Barbara Scuccimarra says construction of Philipstown’s long-awaited senior citizen center will soon get underway. The 6,000-square-foot facility will be located in the Lahey Pavilion, part of the redevelopment of the former Butterfield Hospital site in Cold Spring.

The Lahey Pavilion and Building No. 2 (Photo by M. Turton)

Scuccimarra said March 22 that Guillaro told her construction at Building No. 2 adjacent to Lahey is ahead of schedule. As a result, she said, work on the senior center could begin soon. “I’d like to see seniors in there this fall,” she said. “That would be great.”

The 37-page lease agreement includes an initial 15-year term with an optional 10-year renewal. Putnam County can exercise an option to purchase the facility anytime after the initial term and before the end of the renewal period.

The final amendment was approved by the Putnam County Legislature on Dec. 7. County Executive MaryEllen Odell and Guillaro signed off on Dec. 19 and Dec. 29, respectively, ending what had been a litany of amendments often marked by rancorous debate at the Legislature and its Physical Services Committee.

The amended lease guarantees that Putnam County will provide “round-trip transportation services to any senior citizen resident of Philipstown who wishes to participate in on-site programs.”

The Senior Center Lease: Key Elements

Term: 15 years
Lease option: one 10-year option
Lease option rental: market rate
Annual rent: $77,700
Extra rent in first year: $61,000
Rent increase: 2 percent annually or Consumer Price Index, whichever is greater
Common Area Maintenance (CAM) fees: $50,692
CAM fee annual increase: capped at 3.5 percent after second year

CAM fees include:
Real estate taxes: $30,000 (estimated)
Common area parking, trash, cleaning: $706
Exterior electric: $1,059
Snow plowing: $4,982
Landscaping: $1,906
Irrigation: $776
Sanitation: $1,694
Pest control: $424
Insurance: $2,824
Management: $3,851
Repairs to grounds: $1,412
Repairs to building: $1,058

Scuccimarra noted that the county provides busing at each of its senior centers “and Cold Spring would have been no different. We’ve been doing that for 20 years.”

The stipulation that busing be guaranteed was part of a compromise reached between the developer and the Village of Cold Spring that also reduced the number of parking spaces to 24, the rationale being that providing seniors with transportation would reduce the number of cars at the center. The amendment also states that visitors will be permitted to use spaces elsewhere on the site “within reason” after business hours.

The Cold Spring Planning Board approved the wording in the amendment at its March 9 meeting after receiving a copy of the document on March 3.

Putnam County will receive the building “as is” and is responsible for the cost of renovations, outfitting and utilities. Butterfield Realty will provide a new entrance door, two water lines and $25,000 toward a rooftop HVAC system.

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