Developer proposes senior housing on Heman Street

A senior housing project that was put on hold a year ago due to funding delays is back on.

East Syracuse-based Lakewood Development is again proposing to convert the former Heman Street School in the East Syracuse Minoa School District into 37 individual apartments for seniors age 55 and over.

The $6 million project includes a complete renovation of the 48,000-square-foot building plus a second story addition to the annex. New features would include a community room, emergency pull chords in all bathrooms and bedrooms that would be fully sprinkled, and an elevator and laundry facilities on all floors. The parking lot would be redesigned to better accommodate the tenants and a patio would be added between the main building and the annex.

According to Lakewood President Susan Kimmel, unit size ranges from 684 to 775 square feet for one-bedroom apartments, of which there will be 33, and the four two-bedroom apartments are between 838 to 950 square feet. Rents range from approximately $550 to $650 with heat and hot water included. Eligibility is contingent on annual gross income, which must exceed 60 percent of the area median income for the Syracuse area, Kimmel said.

"This is an ideal use for the building as it sits within the heart of the village and is within walking distance of many services," she said. Ellis Park is located directly behind the building.

Kimmel said the project was proposed for funding last year but was not selected by the New York State Division of Homes and Community Renewal to receive the money necessary to begin construction.

"Since this time we have continued to work with the village of East Syracuse and the state to do whatever we could to improve the competitiveness of the application," she said.

Lakewood Development purchased the property for $460,000 from the East Syracuse Minoa School District.

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