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Battery Point Villas construction to begin in spring

Local officials and the developers gathered in 2017 at the location set for the Battery Point Villas.

It appears a major Dunkirk development is on track for construction in the spring.

Mark Geise, deputy county dxecutive for Economic Development and Chief Executive Officer of the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency, together with Erie Land Development, LLC, announced this morning that the Battery Point Villas luxury apartment complex project planned for 468 Lake Shore Drive East in the city of Dunkirk will break ground in the spring of 2020.

Located on 31 acres overlooking Chadwick Bay along the Lake Erie shoreline, the new 96-unit apartment complex, with 32 units being built in the first phase, will be constructed across the street from the new, nearly-complete 320,000 SF Athenex biopharmaceutical production plant.

Bill Gugino of Erie Land Development has been building homes in Western New York for over 40 years and is excited about their first development in Dunkirk. The new Chadwick Bay living community will provide private country living with the conveniences of a neighborhood within the city limits.

Energy efficient suites have been designed for a contemporary living environment. The initial 111,000-square-foot apartment complex will be built on the front six acres bordering Route 5, featuring private entrances and patios, a majority of the buildings will consist of eight, two-bedroom/two-bathroom units.

“We’ve already started a reservation list of individuals seeking modern housing within an apartment complex setting,” Gugino said. “We expect the villas to appeal to millennials who may not want to buy a home, to empty nesters looking for less space, or to those who don’t want home maintenance responsibilities.”

Battery Point Villas will be located just around the corner from the newly updated Wright Park which features lifeguarded beaches; ball fields; basketball, pickle ball, and street hockey courts; a splash pad; picnicking amenities; a playground; sand volleyball; and spectacular views of Lake Erie. In addition to being just minutes away from the Dunkirk Harbor and Memorial Park, the new villas will be located proximate to all of the conveniences for fitness, shopping, dining, and recreation, offering a suburban lifestyle within an urban setting.

The IDA provided sales and mortgage tax abatements to incentivize the new development. “The CCIDA is pleased to be a partner in attracting new market-rate housing to Dunkirk, which I expect to be a catalyst for further development,” said Geise. “The new apartments will appeal to prospective Athenex employees from outside of the area who prefer a nearby option for local living versus commuting, which will further contribute to the local economy.”

“I’m pleased to see that this project is moving forward,” said Acting County Executive Stephen Abdella. “There is no question that we need more new, efficient housing which appeals to a wide variety of individuals and families. This will certainly help Athenex, Dunkirk, and the County as a whole.”

An additional 25 acres is available for future expansion. Plans may include additional apartment development, or possibly town houses and lakefront homes, depending on demand.

City of Dunkirk Mayor Wilfred Rosas and the city’s Department of Development team have been actively working with Gugino and the IDA since the earliest conversations. “I appreciate this investment in our community. Knowing that Athenex’s construction is on target to be completed within the next year, it is good news that the developers are now ready to start construction on this project,” Rosas said. “The Athenex leadership has expressed to me that current and soon-to-be hired employees are interested in these sites for their future housing options. A variety of housing options appeal to city residents and the local community, therefore this apartment complex will be a great addition to the city’s new modern housing we have been developing in recent years.”

City Director of Planning and Development Rebecca Wurster said, “I believe these 32 units will be filled quickly. There is a lot of excitement from Dunkirk’s current residents who are looking to downsize their housing and are looking for new market rate housing choices within our city.”

In anticipation of this new development, the City of Dunkirk submitted a grant application in July of 2019 through the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) process to develop a new pedestrian path connecting Battery Point Villas to the City’s waterfront park as part of it “Wright Park Phase II” proposal. The announcement regarding 2020 CFA awards is expected to be made sometime next week.

For more information about Battery Point Villas, E-mail erielanddev@aol.com or call 870-4960.

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