OSSINING - A Westchester man paralyzed in the Metro-North derailment in the Bronx last December is one step closer to returning to his home and family in Ossining.

Sam Rivera was one of 70 people injured during the Dec. 1 derailment. Four people died during the incident. He is now confined to a wheelchair and has limited mobility in his arms after surviving the crash.

Rivera, who was an MTA railroad engineer, is suing Metro-North for $100 million.

His new lifestyle includes around-the-clock care, and his home must become wheelchair-accessible and upgraded to fulfill his needs. Rivera was initially scheduled to return home earlier in the summer, but the process of obtaining the right permits and finding an architect to take on the massive design has delayed his homecoming. He has been biding his time at the Field Home nursing home in Cortlandt Manor.

The Village of Ossining Board of Architectural Review voted to move the construction project forward Tuesday night. The next step is to draw up plans to present to the local building department. After a permit is issued, the actual construction can begin. The new house will have a voice-activated elevator and rehab room and is expected to take six months to complete.

Metro-North will be footing the bill for Rivera's new home.