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Plan for craft brewery and tap room on Seventh Street advances

A project to renovate the old Schaefer Malt House on Seventh Street into a craft brewery and tap room will move forward after it cleared the Buffalo Zoning Board of Appeals this week.

The board approved a use variance for a brewery in an area zoned as manufacturing, allowing Community Beer Works Inc. to proceed with plans to renovate part of the former malt house at 520 Seventh St.

The property includes a century-old, four-story brick tower at the corner of Seventh and Jersey streets, as well as a one-story building that consisted of loading docks and warehouse storage space. It’s the one-story, 14,000-square-foot portion will be reused for the business.

The owners plan to use 2,200 square feet for brewing beer, 5,000 square feet for packaging and storage and 2,400 square feet for the commercial kitchen and tap room with a bar area, food service, seating and an outdoor beer garden. The $1.5 million project was already approved by the Buffalo Planning Board.

Additionally, the board green-lighted two variances for a proposal by the Buffalo Federation of Neighborhood Centers Inc. to combine 17 vacant lots on Monroe and Adams streets. The project will reuse the Westminster Settlement House building at 419 Monroe St. and construct a four-story, multi-family apartment complex on Adams.

Plans call for a “village concept” that combines housing for seniors who face mental health or other challenges, alongside a treatment center that has a medical clinic, pharmacy, rehab services and adult day program. The 78,000-square-foot apartment building would include 84 apartments, and would be linked via a glass corridor and one-story lobby to a clinic in the Westminster building.

The Westminster project was also approved previously by the Planning Board.

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