A former judge turned real estate developer has been given the green light to break ground later this week on his newest apartment project – a 48-unit complex on the West Side – after a public hearing on revisions to the plan drew no response from the public Monday and was unanimously approved by the Buffalo Planning Board.
Anthony P. LoRusso Friday announced plans to start construction June 6 on the $8 million venture, a 40,500-square-foot building called Campus West that will be located at 129 West Ave.
That's directly adjacent to his $8.5 million Allentown Square Apartments, at 295 Maryland St., which will also have a ribbon-cutting Thursday – even though it's been open to tenants since 2017.
One slight hitch to his plan was a recent proposal to increase the size of the Campus West project from 39 units to 48 units, and whether or not the Planning Board was inclined to approve it – a requirement before LoRusso could obtain building permits so construction can begin.
LoRusso's APL Property Group proposed and received city approval for a four-story building with 39 units. It originally included a full basement, a first-floor office and about 1,000 square feet of community space.
But to satisfy his lender's request for more revenue, LoRusso is scrapping the office and community space and replacing it with nine additional apartments, for a total of 48 units, according to his application to the Planning Board. He wants to expand the basement and remove one rooftop patio at the rear to provide more living space.
The Planning Board, at its last meeting, did not express opposition to the concept, but determined that the changes were significant enough to warrant a new public hearing.
The micro-apartments inside the new four-story building are 550-square-foot, one-bedroom apartments, with rents of $1,000 per month. That's designed to be affordable for moderate-income tenants.
The project, to be constructed by RP Oak Hill Building Co., is expected to be completed by April 2020.
"Campus West expands upon the fresh and modern approach to apartment design and development offered by Allentown Square,” LoRusso said. “Both complexes bring something unique into the marketplace and we think they’ll be attractive to singles, couples, students, millennials, retirees, as well as new arrivals to Buffalo.”