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West Seneca undecided where to put surplus Army tank

A few details remain before West Seneca adds a U.S. Army tank on the Town Hall campus, including where it will go.

Plans show the tank, which saw action in the Middle East, displayed between Town Hall and the West Seneca Library in the Walkway of Freedom complex, once construction on the library addition and renovation are completed.

But Supervisor Sheila Meegan said Monday the proposed spot for the tank might be too close to Town Hall.

"I think we'll discuss putting the tank on the hill," she said. "Right now it doesn't look like the tank will work out."

Chairman of the West Seneca Veterans Committee Jim Manley. (Buffalo News/Barbara O'Brien)

"The plan was always to put it in front of Town Hall," said Jim Manley, chairman of the West Seneca Veterans Committee. "There's plenty of room out there."

The tank is now sitting in a yard along Route 104 in the Oswego County Town of Hannibal, Manley said. It had been on display at a Veterans of Foreign Wars post that lost its charter, he said. Still owned by the Department of the Army, the tank is considered surplus equipment, and available to be placed in West Seneca.

"The tank has always been a symbol of the American soldier," Manley said.

The supervisor said town officials have discussed placing the tank in a prominent location closer to Union Road and Main Street. The tank was in service until 1980, he said. Weighing in at about 58 tons even without its engine, the tank needs a solid pad underneath it.

"My one concern would be the cost of the pad that has to go under it," Councilman Eugene Hart said. "It has to be pretty substantial."

Manley told West Seneca Town Board members Monday that the committee has not started fundraising for the cost of transporting the tank to West Seneca, because it was waiting for approval. He is looking into having a private contractor move it.

The committee has placed some items in storage during construction, including five of the learning stations, several benches, a Vietnam memorial, and about 300 bricks from Path of Courage from the Gatling gun back to the Path of Glory, and all the bricks from the Path of Honor. The fireman's and policeman's memorials were relocated in front of Town Hall.

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