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      Plans approved for new Ronald McDonald House

      The Syracuse Planning Commission approved plans on Monday evening to move forward with the construction of a new Ronald McDonald House. The charity has been trying to build a home for sick and disadvantaged kids, but there have been a lot of road blocks for the project. The Ronald McDonald House bought the property known as the Kingsley-True house on East Genesee Street in Syracuse. The plan was to construct a new building, but preservationists said the property should be designated as a landmark. In February, the Syracuse Common Council rejected that proposal.

      Last month, the Syracuse Landmark Preservation Board and Ronald McDonald House agreed to meet and make changes to the building plans. Both sides were able to reach an agreement and that's why the process is now moving forward. Members of the Landmark Preservation Board spoke at Monday night's meeting and recommended the Planning Commission approve the project plan as revised.

      According to Robert Baldwin, Jr., lawyer for the Ronald McDonald House, all of the changes were made to the exterior of the building, with the most significant adjustments at the top of the building. A deck will be added to the front entrance of the building, but the size of the building will not change, which was an initial concern for many people in the community. The Commission's approval now means the Ronald McDonald organization can apply for permits to demolish the current structure.