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Former Lowville municipal building reborn as medical center

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LOWVILLE — The village’s former municipal building has been reborn as a downtown, full-service medical center.

“It all has to do with high quality, well-timed services,” said Dr. Steven L. Lyndaker, a local family practitioner. “That’s what we’re in the business of providing.”

In February, Dr. Lyndaker and his wife, Dr. Shereen E. Palmer, bought the 112-year-old building at 5402 Dayan St., once the Lowville Elks Lodge, from the village for $65,000 at an auction and spent the past nine months renovating it.

On Nov. 18, they moved their private practice, Lowville Medical Associates, from leased space at Lewis County General Hospital to the first floor of the historic building.

An open house is planned from 3 to 6 p.m. Sunday at the new medical building. The lone entrance is on the east side of the building adjacent to the four-corners lot.

Lowville Medical Associates also includes pediatrician Dr. MaryLou Feilmeier, and Dr. R. Brian Shambo, who has operated a family practice in Copenhagen for many years and recently joined the group.

The practice is accepting new patients and all insurances, including Medicare. The telephone number is 376-5558.

Amber R.Z. Astafan, a graduate of Beaver River Central School and Clarkson University, Potsdam, also has opened Journey Physical Therapy PLLC in the building’s ground floor.

Mrs. Astafan, who previously had a practice in Watertown, will see patients from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fridays, as well as evening hours by appointment. The phone number is 377-4114.

The ground floor also features a small laboratory for routine lab work, and Feed the Soul Nutrition is slated to open there soon.

Dentist Dr. Yong S. Chang, who previously worked at the North Country Children’s Clinic’s dental site at the hospital, is also planning to open a practice in January on the second floor, while Lowville Urgent Care is slated to open Dec. 16.

The urgent care is to be open from 2 to 8 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays and will feature Drs. Sean P. Harney and Daniel R. Cappon, both former long-time physicians in the Lewis County General Hospital emergency department.

The center also is offering telepsychiatry for both adults and children through a provider in Syracuse.

“We’re doing cutting-edge primary care in the middle of this wonderful community,” Dr. Palmer said.

The 10,000-square-foot building offers flexibility for the future, and the location in the heart of downtown Lowville is also a plus, Dr. Lyndaker said.

“I think you feel a little more connected to the community,” he said.

Dr. Lyndaker said he is hopeful the practice — which is bringing in resident physicians from Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester — will help attract younger doctors to this community.

“You’ve got to have space and services that are appealing,” he said.

Despite moving away from the county-owned hospital, Dr. Lyndaker said the practice will continue to support that facility and meet all clinical obligations there.

“Other than physical location, our relationship with the hospital is unchanged,” he said.

The restoration project — including a small addition on the east side of the building to accommodate a handicapped-accessible entrance and elevator — was designed by Watertown architectural firm Aubertine and Currier. Purcell Construction, Watertown, served as general contractor.

Dr. Lyndaker said the effort was not only less costly than new construction but also more gratifying.

“That’s really something that we love to do,” he said of restoration projects.

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