Thursday, April 24, 2014

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Developer talks about $75 million waterfront development project

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Buffalo: Developer talks about $75 million waterfront development project
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During the State of the City, Mayor Brown announced a $75 million waterfront development project that's in the works.

Ellicott Development Company Chairman of the Board Carl Paladino called the Webster Block the crown jewel of downtown development, but his company was passed over by the city in favor of another proposal from the Buffalo Sabres.

"We asked Ellicott Development to look at other sites to do their project. They approached the Buffalo Urban Renewal Agency board with a project that was already very well defined," said Mayor Byron Brown, (D).

It appears Ellicott Development will have a second chance at what Paladino says is the biggest project his company has worked on.

"What you're looking at is a conceptual look at a project that is actually larger in scope than what we were doing on Webster Block," Paladino said.

The company has plans to build a nearly 600,000 square foot, 14-story building on this parcel of land near the Erie Basin Marina.

"It's the true definition of a mixed-use building. Every commercial use you can imagine, I think you're going to have in this building," said Paladino.

In many ways the project is similar to the Webster Block proposal.

"We started with it and we evolved it."

But Paladino says the development will take advantage of what the new property has to offer with a smaller parking ramp, a spa and a rooftop restaurant among other things.

"(It's) quieter. (There are) beautiful views looking out on the lake and back over the city."

There is still plenty of red tape to cut through, but unlike the Webster Block, this property won't go out to bid.

"I am confident that once this project goes to the Buffalo Urban Renewal Agency board for full consideration, that the project will get the board's support and approval," Brown said.

Ellicott Development hasn't bought the parcel of land yet. They mayor says the city will get the property appraised and the goal is to get the full appraised value.

Paladino says he hopes to break ground around Spring 2014 and he says it will be called the Carlo after his grandfather.

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