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FIRM HIT OVER ODOR EYES LACKAWANNA SITE

Bakery Salvage Corp., which has drawn the wrath of Black Rock neighbors for years and been shut down due to its offensive odor, is considering a relocation to Lackawanna.

But the Lackawanna site would be a different situation from Buffalo and include filtering equipment that should eliminate most or all of the odor that sometimes envelops Buffalo's neighborhood, Lackawanna officials say.

If Lackawanna residents don't want it, the company will look elsewhere.

"As needy as we are for new business, the mayor has said she is not willing to sacrifice the image or integrity of the city," Douglas Druzbik, development director, said Friday.

The City Council at its meeting Monday night will be asked to schedule a work session at which Bakery Salvage officials will outline their plan and the public will be allowed to speak, Druzbik said.

If the company is not welcomed in Lackawanna, Bakery Salvage President David Olshan has indicated he will look elsewhere, Druzbik added.

Olshan confirmed he is looking into the possibility of relocating in Lackawanna but had no other comment.

Druzbik said the company, which converts stale bread products into animal feed, is considering purchasing the former South Buffalo Railroad building at 2600 Hamburg Turnpike (Route 5).

The 89,000-square-foot facility is owned by Realtor Thomas Blaine and two partners. Blaine said he is not aware of Bakery Salvage's interest. However, he said several brokers are showing the building and he understands there are several interested parties. The asking price is $375,000, he said. He declined to say how much was paid for the building in June.

The facility is zoned industrial and Bakery Salvage has no legal responsibility to seek the city's permission before moving, Druzbik said. But he added the company does not want to go where it's not wanted.

Many Lackawanna residents are sensitive about the city's image and previous proposals for such things as a tire-burning plant and medical waste facility were shouted down.

Druzbik agreed it is likely some residents also will oppose the Bakery Salvage plan, fearing the city is again being targeted for something no one else wants.

"But I think we should listen to the proposal first and then decide," he said.

Much of the problem with the company's current location on Chandler Street is that it is crammed into a residential neighborhood, he said.

The situation would be different in Lackawanna with a larger facility that would enable the entire operation to be contained in the building with drainage facilities for cleaning trucks and other equipment. Also, the company would install a $200,000 biofilter that would eliminate all or most of the odor, he said.

It would bring 40 jobs to the city with the potential for 40 more within three to five years.

The site is about 100 yards from homes in Bethlehem Park and that could be a concern, Druzbik said.

People living near the plant in Buffalo have complained about it for years, and it was ordered to cease operations as of Oct. 5 by the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

Druzbik said he understands the company continues to collect and store the bakery byproducts until such time it is allowed to resume operations.

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