County Planning Sees No Major Concerns With Athenex Site Plans

FREDONIA — No major concerns are coming from the Chautauqua County Planning Board as it relates to Athenex’s site plans.

State law requires certain types of municipal planning, zoning and subdivision projects be sent to the county Planning Board for review prior to action taken by a local board. The county Planning Board was in receipt of site plans for the biopharmeceutical company on Lakeshore Drive East in the town of Dunkirk.

A brief site plan presentation was given on Monday at the LoGuidice Center in Fredonia by Andrew Kosa, Clark Patterson Lee engineer. Board members followed by approving a preliminary draft response by the county Planning and Economic Development Department that contained a few recommendations. They include more landscape for the 360-space parking lot and a vegetative buffer between the 320,000-square-foot facility and residential properties along the northern end to create a visual barrier.

Board Chairman Doug Bowen said there’s no major issues from a planning standpoint. A height variance request will need to be approved by town officials since the proposed facility will sit 6 feet higher than what local code allows.

“I think it’s located in a good location, and for the most part fits (the town’s) zoning,” Bowen said. “There should be no visual impacts whether it’s 6 feet higher than what’s allowed. Overall, it’s good for the area and it brings jobs.”

The board asked Kosa about the idea of permeable pavement and whether a state environmental quality review assessment was complete. As for permeable pavement, Kosa said maintenance becomes an issue. In regards to the SEQR, he said one was completed and submitted. Kosa said a few changes were made to SEQR.

“There’s a couple clarifications like water usage, which wasn’t well defined,” he said. “We went back and defined that.”

The Dunkirk Town Planning Board initiated its review of site plans and supporting documents last week. Kosa said a water connection and the commercial entrance are the biggest questions that remain to be worked out.