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Planning Board Hears Canal Side Details | Buffalo Rising

Planning Board Hears Canal Side Details

The Buffalo Planning Board was provided with an overview of Canal Side General Project Plan and associated design guidelines that will apply to future development in the inner harbor area on Tuesday.  The presentation was given by consultants retained by the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation (ECHDC).  No official Planning Board action was required.

Canal Side is expected to contain one million square feet of commercial, cultural, and residential space on 20 acres of land at the foot of Main Street.  The “preferred alternative” calls for 277,250 square feet of retail space; 173,750 square feet of restaurant and entertainment space; approximately 293,600 square feet of office space; approximately 215 residences; two hotels with a total of 250 rooms; and, 20,000 square feet of cultural space.

DSC_0138.JPG

Stan Eckstut, Senior Principal of Ehrenkrantz Eckstut Kuhn Architects and master architect for Canal Side, provided a twenty minute overview of the project (image above).  A set of design guidelines has been prepared to merge the public and private spaces into a coherent whole.  The Buffalo Planning Board will have a role in ensuring development adheres to the guidelines.

The intent of the design guidelines is to foster the formation of active, visually-interesting spaces with high-quality materials and contemporary techniques that connect to the unique history of the Project Area and Buffalo as a whole.  A prime focus of the guidelines is on the pedestrian to provide a human-scaled setting with good way finding and a comfortable walking environment.  The guidelines will also address sustainability as the ECHDC is aiming for a LEED-certified development.

Moreover, the design guidelines are also intended to create visual interest from near and far. Up close, ground level design features should produce comfortable, inviting, and stimulating environments. From afar, a variable skyline of roof edges, vertical shafts, massing, and signage will create visual interest. 

Standards concerning such features as use, curb cuts, circulation, fenestration, materials, color, scale, lighting, and signage are proposed.  At full build-out, the project will have the appearance of a variety of buildings and spaces that have been built over time, by different owners and designers.  Bulk controls for buildings will provide continuity at the scale of the block and respond to the heights of existing site conditions such as the heights of the HSBC Arena, Marine Drive Apartments, and the Skyway. 

The Planning Board and a Canal Side Design Committee will assist the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation Board of Directors with the adoption and implementation of the guidelines. Their role is to help ensure that the guidelines and all development at Canal Side promote a cohesive atmosphere that is inspired by the architecture of Buffalo’s historic canal district.  

“Every plan will be reviewed by the Buffalo Planning Board for consistency with the design guidelines,” says Adam S. Walters, an attorney with Phillips Lytle specializing in environmental and land use and zoning law.  According to Walters, plans for the Bass Pro anchor store will be the first Canal Side component to be reviewed by the Planning Board in coming months.

Comments on the General Project Plan and design guidelines will be accepted by ECHDC through February 26.  A public hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, January 26th at the Albright Knox Art Gallery.  It begins at 6 PM.

After the public comment period, the project plan and design guidelines are expected to be adopted by ECHDC and Empire State Development in March.  The environmental review for the project is in its “final stages” says Walters.  A supplemental study to address Marine Drive Apartment residents’ concerns over traffic, noise, air quality and visual impacts from a proposed new parking ramp is in draft form.  

Thumbnail image for CSmain-thumb-505xauto-6360.png.

Canal Side would incorporate a phased, market-based build out.  Assuming that appropriate funding would be available and that there would not be any unanticipated delays, the initial phase would be largely completed by Memorial Day 2011.

About the author  ⁄ WCPerspective

Buffalo and development junkie currently exiled in California.

89 comments
alex23
alex23

It's good to see that Buffalo knows how to manage the spaces that were not in use for a long time. Another case was in the Gainsville Real Estate area. They managed to increase substantially the local economy by transforming some forgotten spaces in cultural centers and apartments for young couples.

millermax10
millermax10

It's really good to hear that the ECHDC is aiming for a LEED friendly building. There's really no reason not to have a building that makes efficient use of energy these days, so this is definitely good news.

Max Miller
Max Miller

It's really great to see cities like Buffalo paying more and more attention to making sure their buildings are LEED certified (http://www.everblueenergy.com/leed-certification). LEED truly is the wave of the future, and cities that don't start planning with LEED in mind will soon be behind.

sonyactivision
sonyactivision

One thing retail watchers here should consider is that many toney shopping centers began with a humdrum mix of local and national retailers. As receipts grew and the customer base expanded, the less upscale shops were replaced by many finer stores. I've seen this in many areas. It's a process of evolution. Canalside will need enough interesting stores to bring in the traffic and then better retailers will come in. Bass Pro is a big driver but any number of other stores can score a direct hit with the customers and start the ball rolling.

The Kettle
The Kettle

If Kohls opens up a subsidy free canal side location as a result of activity generated from publicly funded bass pro would canal side be "more natural"? in your eyes?

rb09
rb09

Talk

It's only talk

Arguments

Agreements

Advice

Answers

Articulate announcements

It's only talk

Talk

It's only talk

Babble

Burble

Banter

Bicker bicker bicker

Brouhaha

Boulderdash

Ballyhoo

It's only talk

Back talk

Talk talk talk

It's only talk

Comments

Cliches

Commentary

Controversy

Chatter

Chit-chat

Chit-chat

Chit-chat

Conversation

Contradiction

Criticism

It's only talk

Cheap talk

Talk

Talk

It's only talk

Debates

Discussions

These are words with a D this time

Dialogue

Dualogue

Diatribe

Dissention

Declamation

Double talk

Double talk

Talk

Talk

It's all talk

Too much talk

Small talk

Talk that trash

Expressions

Editorials

Expugnations

Exclamations

Enfadulations

It's all talk

Elephant talk

Elephant talk

Elephant talk

patricknjohn
patricknjohn

Does any one think any thing is really going to happen…is the sixth or the fifty-sixth “grand plan” for the water front …Bass pro is not going to happen the founder for bass pro is a friend of the family and he has no time the BS and the protest that you know some loser will have a problem. The city is all ready to scrap the plan because some rent control welfare recipients that are lucky enough to live on the water front are upset that exhaust from auto will interfere with there crack smoking. when will this city get some real leadership. move forward with a plan stop letting moron that dont have anything better to do but think of how they can stop any development they dont like. nothing would have ever been built in this country if they stop to make sure every loser with a stick and a marker is happy. It will never happen..Bring on the next grand plan

PaulBuffalo
PaulBuffalo

Because western New York is sufficiently saturated with national retailers based on population, foot traffic and income levels.

I don't understand the need to make Buffalo's beautiful waterfront, of all places, another shopping mall. Once downtown gets its act together over time, that would be the natural place for a dense retail environment.

whatever
whatever

pitbull, you're still trying to use a straw man argument. I didn't say that no retailer in North Buffalo ever received any form of government subsidy. Of course some have.

What I said was as a whole the retail in North Buffalo has grown more naturally than Canalside. I could have said "much more" instead of just more. It isn't even close to the level of government involvement and percent of taxpayer funding.

Trying to cherry pick a store or two like Target doesn't prove your case at all. I'd be surprised if Target's level of public subsidy was anywhere near what Bass Pro is getting, but even if it was it wouldn't change what I said about the whole NB retail district vs CS. Let's end all retail subsidies in both NB and CS and then see which of those retail districts would continue and keep growing (and at which one it would stop in its tracks).

Interesting that you didn't choose Kohls as an example, which paid its own way according to this:

http://www.speakupwny.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-17733.html

"Benderson Development Co. announced Monday it will demolish a vacant department store at 2232 Delaware Ave., which was formerly home to Hills and Ames, to make way for a new 88,000-square-foot Kohl’s store.

...

Neither Benderson, nor Kohl’s plan to seek any tax abatements."

How can that last sentence be possible? Oh wait, don't tell me, I know: because customers arrive at Kohls in cars using streets that are susbidized... so you'll say Kohls is no different at all from Bass Pro having their store built by taxpayers. And Kohls is closer to the suburbs than Bass Pro and we all know how the burbs are stealing all of our resources. I get it now!

grad94
grad94

if dan is correct i for one sigh with relief. the more chains locate elsewhere, the more our local retailers can flourish and make buffalo a genuinely distinctive destination.

grad94
grad94

hodgepodge is exactly how i'd describe our most successful desirable retail areas - elmwood & hertel. no one masterplanned them, no one developer had to overcompensate for the lack of different designers working over time by introducing studiously contrived facade variations, no one owner controls everything friggin last detail.

hodgepodge is -exactly- what canalside needs.

The Kettle
The Kettle

There are plenty of retailers in WNY now but they are concentrated in malls that the most of the population considers shopping destinations. If canal side could be established as a comprable or better destination why wouldnt those retailers locate there as they do in malls?

The Kettle
The Kettle

Not sure how you continue to spin the IKEA thing into Buffalo hate. Although GTA has a 3 ikeas none of them are located in Toronto. Should they feel "insulted" that Winnepeg or North York were chosen for stores and their downtown was not?

BTW if anybody has to have pretentious, Euro furnishings over FWS or Raymore, there is an Ikea in nearby Burlington Ontario abt 15 min northwest of the LQ.

The Kettle
The Kettle

Whatever>"And all those didn't need to be recruited to Buffalo by big staffs of well paid govt bureaucrats"

Maybe the tooth fairy cleaned up the toxic land and sponsored the anchor tennants that drew the other retailers you mentioned?

Whatever">Compared to the many millions in corporate welfare at Canalside, did taxpayers pay anywhere near proportionately to construct customized buildings (and parking garages, etc.) for the following stores in North Buffalo?"

If the ammount spent on The inner harbor were brought down to (if it costed less) remediating former Erie and DL&W property and subsidies given to Benderson for Tops-Target, would that make Canal Side "more natural"?

PaulBuffalo
PaulBuffalo

Yep, but it will still fall on deaf ears to many on BRO.

Chris
Chris

The outlet mall in the town of Niagara seems to be doing just fine selling to upper middle class canadians. The Buffalo Airport is succeeding on the backs of Canadians.

Why would the waterfront be different?

Dan
Dan

Dear Buffalo,

Buffalo will see a Stanley Cup, Super Bowl, gentrification of the Fruit Belt and Broadway-Fillmore areas, the demolition of the Skyway and Niagara Thruway viaduct, new factories from Chinese-owned auto manufacturers like Geely and Chery, The Arch of Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and International Shrine of the Holy Innocents of the Martyred Saints of the Sacred Rosary of the Holy Assumption of the Precious Sorrows of Our Lady Queen of Peace of the Blessed Infants of the Epiphany, skate park, Metro Rail extension to the UB North Campus, tolls removed from the Thruway, the rim of Niagara Falls at Riverside Park thanks to millennia of erosion, and Juneau, Alaska as a suburb of San Francisco due to plate tectonics before it sees an IKEA.

Give it up. No, Buffalo, you can't have an IKEA. Not yours. No inexpensive contemporary assemble-it-yourself furniture. No kitchen cabinets with doors and drawers that softly decelerate to a closed position. No BILLY bookshelves. No free daycare for the kids. No Swedish meatball, mashed potato and ligonberry meal specials for $2.99. No As-Is section or Handy Person's pile. No free twine. No 1% store credit if you use your debit card. Winnipeg can have an IKEA; in fact, I'm building one there as I type this. Yes, I think Winnipeg is a better market for IKEA than Buffalo. That's how much I think of you.

Love,

Ingvar.

dcoffee
dcoffee

Totally agree. I'm a city boy, I bought a house here, I shop in the city, I avoid the sprawl, and I believe Buffalo is on the rise. But we should avoid chasing silver-bullets and spend our investment dollars wisely.

People live in the suburbs because they like it there. You think they are going to drive past their strip-malls and shopping centers on Transit, Sheridan, Niagara Falls Blvd, Walden and etc, get on the highway, and drive to a downtown shopping center? I don't believe it.

Retail does well on Elmwood, Allen and Hertel because there is a density of loyal residents and an urban appeal to those streets. That's where retail lives for now, and in case you haven't noticed, retail isn't doing a lot of business in this recession anyway. I know we wish Downtown had kept its retail core decades ago, but it's gone, and that's ok. Let's build on what we have.

Build out the infrastructure and public spaces. Don't start with Bass Pro, start with apartments. Stick to ground floor retail in residential and office buildings. Build out high quality walkable public spaces and residences to bring people there, and let the development happen organically.

Dan
Dan

A "furniture row" would be a great idea, but natural agglomerations like that take time. Agglomerations for low-end vehicle-oriented businesses (auto body shops, auto parts stores, heavy equipment rental, camper shell dealers, etc) emerge quite quickly, and in some exurban areas in Southern states it's quite a problem.

Your comment about the 30 piece bedroom set has some truth behind it. Since I moved back to Buffalo, I noticed that a relatively large proportion of retail businesses in the Buffalo area have names that include one or more of the words "discount", "factory"", "bargain" "warehouse", "outlet", "liquidators", or some variant; much more so than other places where I've lived.

Could a store like West Elm make it in Buffalo? We'd like to think so, but national retailers also look at what's called ROI, or return on investment. They might be able to make a profit in Buffalo, but of they could make even more money by opening a tenth store in the DC area, that's what they'll do. A lower potential ROI is one reason why so many expanding national chains only end up in Buffalo after they've saturated the rest of the country.

Ikea: again, consider there's many metro areas that are much larger than Buffalo that don't have an Ikea, and are unlikely to land one soon; Cleveland, Kansas City, St. Louis, Columbus, and Milwaukee to name a few. They're either considered to be in the market area of another Ikea (go to the Ikea in Pittsburgh, and check out all the cars with Cuyahoga, Summit and Lake County-stickered Ohio license plates), or in a market area that isn't big enough even when communities within 150 miles are considered (Kansas City with St. Joseph, Topeka, Lawrence and Columbia nearby, for example. KC is probably more likely than not to land one within about five to ten years after Denver/Centennial opens, even with the presence of the ginormous Nebraska Furniture store in KCK.).

Ikea's expansion plan for the US much more conservative than for the rest of the world. Sure, in Europe, small metros the size of Syracuse and Grand Rapids will have an Ikea or two, but this isn't Europe. In First World English-speaking countries, Ikea has opened in smaller metros like Hamilton, Belfast, Coventry, Bristol and Adelaide, but Ikea's plans for the US are much different. Ikea's US launch was almost a failure, and they're still quite cautious here. Also remember that Rust Belt tastes are somewhat different than the rest of the country. Thanks to our demographics, a larger proportion of people in WNY seem to prefer styles that are less contemporary and more traditional or flamboyant (French Provincial, Rococo, etc).

I agree, though, that it's an insult to think that Ikea has recently broken ground for a store in Winnipeg -- again, WINNIPEG -- but their reps have said they won't ever, ever, EVER consider Buffalo. We're not as appealing to Ikea as WINNIPEG. Think about that.

Dan
Dan

I think that would be a great idea. There's still quite a few holdout businesses scattered throughout the city; places that have been fixtures in a neighborhood for generations, even as the neighborhood changed around them.

clockhill
clockhill

P.S. The Republic Steel site would be perfect for an IKEA, once remediated. Even a sea of parking is a higher and better use than industrial brownfield.

clockhill
clockhill

This development gives some credence to the idea that Buffalo is a CITY. Cities are most intensely activated by pedestrians, and therefore must cater to them, with sidewalks, and human scaled details that make walking attractive. These are the qualities that are MUSTS when discussing a city. Some of Canalside hits the mark, but some of it misses.

A development centering around a subsidized big box store squanders its newfound tax base on supporting an expensive retailer. Big box stores and chain stores aren't the highest and best use of land, either. Chain stores have mass appeal, but must be replaced by even better local businesses in order to have a sustainable local economy.

The last Canalside article talked about offering $4 million to *another* large retailer. I am SURE there is at least one person in Buffalo with the wherewithal to create a really amazing, extremely "Buffalo," clothing store or grocery, or pottery store, or something even better if they were given $4 million to start with and 5 years of tax credits, which Bass Pro doesn't need, or seem to really want.

I don't want to get into a racial argument. I believe the healthiest neighborhoods have a mixture of incomes. Whatever that implies, it implies. But this development cannot be all one anything if it is to be a "city."

An ok attempt, all in all. But still NOT GOOD ENOUGH for the residents of Buffalo.

rb09
rb09

So much for having something done for the 2011 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships.

While we're young! Can we get this thing going. I'd like to ice skate on the canals someday before I'm 95.

rb09
rb09

So much for having something done for the 2011 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships.

While we're young! Can we get this thing going. I'd like to ice skate on the canals someday before I'm 95.

PaulBuffalo
PaulBuffalo

If that were true, those retailers would be in Buffalo now. Unfortunately, Buffalo's demographics don't interest those retailers. What is expected to change to make the numbers inviting to more retailers? Will Buffalo's population grow soon? Will better paying jobs suddenly appear?

I'm not trying to be negative, but Buffalo has a long way to go until it can attract more national retail into the city: that means more people and higher-paying jobs.

beammeup
beammeup

Shazam, 58 comments & nobody said "they should put an Ikea down there."

jimmy
jimmy

I agree completely! I am a fan of United Mens Fashions and have been shopping there for years.

I wonder why BRO hasn't done a feature on them yet?

Texpat
Texpat

@ buffox, sorry if I came across as too harsh but it seems to me that people are always saying put a ___________ at _________ location without thinking about the fact that the store actually decides if and where they will locate in any city.

I believe Whole Foods is coming. Friends that work there and everything I've read tell me that they must push their market to continue to grow and it is growth upon which their stock price is built. A grocery store needs about 10,000 people in its dedicated demographic to be profitable. While Amherst and Clarence are no Bloomfield Hills or Chagrin/Shaker/Pepper Pike they can certainly deliver 10,000 higher income and quality focused shoppers. Downtown just isn't there yet.

Crate and Barrel and the others all have robust internet and catalog sales so those that want to shop there will find them online. They don't need bricks and mortar for that. If, Canalside proves a success and has the traffic then I don't see any reason why thaey might not locate there but it certainly isn't a "must be there" location. CB is in Milwaukee, KC, St. Louis, Richmond and Raleigh. Those cities probably weren't shoo-ins either. But since the Pyramid folks (very aggressive) haven't been able to get them to the Galleria I just wouldn't hold my breath.

As for Ikea Dan hit it on that one. Forget it. If they ever did choose to locate in WNY it certainly wouldn't be in the city. The only place I can think of that they've done that is in Brooklyn and even there they are going into an old industrial brownfield. You'd see them in Hamburg or Lancaster or something.

townline
townline

I (white guy) love UMF. I think they have a pretty good diversity in selection in that store that caters to a really wide range of people. Its probably not the place to go for higher end suits, but the suit I bought there in undergrad has lasted me longer than any suit that I own (including the piece of crap I paid $250 at Men's Warehouse for my wedding less than 2 years ago that has since fallen apart at every seam). They also have a lot of suit separates for REALLY reasonable prices, if you just need a sportcoat.

brownteeth
brownteeth

IKEA probably won't locate here but down the line I could definately see a lot of the other stores you listed. Delaware ave would be prime for that demographic, but it would take a few of the stores to make it more of a destination for furniture. Then again I'm thinking in terms of what I like and not the average Buffalonian. If they don't have sales that are no interest or payments til 2020 on 27 piece bedroom sets then most people here won't shop there.

PaulBuffalo
PaulBuffalo

Dan, many of us have reiterated the same comments, albeit not so eloquently, on these threads repeatedly; but, a lot of people commenting on BRO still believe that the retail shopping cart can be put before the horse.

jimmy
jimmy

United Mens Fashions has a very lucrative customer base and are seen as one of the only men's clothing stores in Buffalo who stayed while others fled. Riverside Men's Shop moved to the suburbs, Brennans moved to Williamsville, others closed all together, but UMF has been around for close to a century and has a very stable and loyal customer base.

Then again, maybe we just want a trendy, white-washed, chain store style shopping destination that competes with the suburban malls and attracts the white suburban clientele. That way, if for some reason things don't work out, we can quickly point to the fear of the city as a reason for our failure.

I'd like to see retailers that cater to the urban environment. Stores, spas, restaurants, that will add to the city, not take away from the rest of the region. We know that we aren't going to attract major chain retailers due to demographic concerns, so let's focus on those that we can attract.

I was using UMF as one example of a local store that could possibly thrive at the waterfront. The fact that the clientele is mostly African American should be secondary in thought. This isn't an everyday shop for the average person, this is a destination that people head to a couple times a year to get good quality clothing that other retailers are afraid to carry.

Dan
Dan

Whether it's true or not, some believe that a growing proportion of urban-oriented stores (hip-hop clothing, sneaker stores, etc), and the crowds of African-American youths they drew scared white shoppers away from Main Place Mall, caused mainstream tenants to shutter their doors due to lack of business, and ultimately lead to the demise of what was once a very busy shopping center.

Mall dynamics are weird. If a mall gets a reputation as being a "Chris Rock mall", white shoppers stay away in droves. Mall of Memphis, Randall Park Mall in Cleveland, Irondequoit Mall in Rochester, just to name a few - all vibrant malls that died thanks to the heightened racism and low "tipping point" that is a part of mall dynamics. The same dynamics really aren't seen in Main street-style districts. When there was still a sold core of retail on Main Street downtown, the wig stores and urban clothing stores coexisted with the department stores, jewelers, stationers and shoe stores.

I remember seeing pimp suits unironically displayed in the windows of United Men's Fashions in the 1970s. Before my time, UMF was no different than Riverside Mens Shop, the Squire Shop, or any other independent men's store. As the African-American community drew closer to Kensington, and much of the Jefferson Avenue business district lay in ruins after the riots and blight of the 1960s, UMF's owners began to capitalize on what they saw as a growing and very lucrative market, years before African-Americans actually began to migrate into the Kensington neighborhood.

Dan
Dan

Ikea doesn't do central cities, and a couple of years go their reps told city officials they'll NEVER locate in the Buffalo area. NEVER. Ikea basically dissed Buffalo. In the US, unlike other countries, Ikea prefers to locate stores in fairly large metro areas with millions more within a 60 to 90 minute drive. Austin is the smallest metro in the US with an Ikea, and the store draws from San Antonio and surrounding towns; they have a trade area of about 4,000,000 residents and growing. An Ikea in Buffalo would have a trade area of about 2,500,000 including Rochester, and those numbers are shrinking. Buffalo's demographics also lean to the old side; Ikea is too contemporary for the likes of the Frank-and-Joanne crowd, and their furniture tends to be sized a bit small for the likes of chicken wing and fish fry-fed Buffalonians.

I know "Let's put an Ikea downtown: is a popular meme here, but it's not happening. Even in Europe, Ikea locates their stores in big blue buildings by motorways kilometers from city centers.

Crate and Barrel, CB2, West Elm, Room and Board, Design Within Reach ... nope. Not coming. Sorry. Just like Whole Foods and others, they look for the "solid upper-income and preferably young for miles around" clusters, the likes of which do not exist here. The majority of national chains don't site stores based on hunches or the perceived lack of competition; they follow very strict formulas for site selection. Like I said before, the numbers for the Amherst/Williamsville/Clarence cluster pale in comparison to Oakland County, Michigan, the Heights/Hillcrest/Chagrin Valley/SOM Center Corridor suburbs of Cleveland, North Columbus/Dublin/Worthington/Delaware County, and even the Brighton/Pittsford/Perinton/Penfield/Fairport/Mendon/Victor area in Rochester. Consider that the Arhaus location in Buffalo closed in the early 1990s, and the Walden Galleria can't even land an otherwise ubiquitous Restoration Hardware store.

I thought you guys hated all chains, anyhow?

scottw
scottw

Plan;

Looks ridiculous, sorry kids.

Canalside development?;

Thumbs up. However more land ought to slated for residents.

Where are we?;

Where we always are.....talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk etc.

Spend lots of money we don't have to talk about projects that never get done.

whatever
whatever

pitbull>"Could you expain what you mean by "more naturally"? "

Are you familiar with the word "more"? It's used for comparisons.

http://www.yourdictionary.com/more

"more (môr) adjective

1. greater in amount, degree, or number: often used as the comparative of much or many"

Compared to the many millions in corporate welfare at Canalside, did taxpayers pay anywhere near proportionately to construct customized buildings (and parking garages, etc.) for the following stores in North Buffalo?

Marshalls (and 10 or so other stores in its plaza usually with full parking lot), Feel Rite across the street and several stores next to that, Fleet Feet, Kohls, Office Max, AJ Wright and other stores next to that, Target, Starbucks, T-Mobile and others in that block and the one next to it, Home Depot, about 10 stores on sides of the Tops parking lot toward Elmwood, Office Depot, and others...

And all those didn't need to be recruited to Buffalo by big staffs of well paid govt bureaucrats.

Now, and keeping in mind what "more" means, in which part of the city is retail more naturally happening - N. Buffalo or Canalside?

Buffalonian4life
Buffalonian4life

Buffalo has tried to lure an IKEA in the past (Elmwood Ave.). The fact is that they are not at all interested in locating in urban areas. Though unlikely, it is a good idea. For all that have said we should try to lure retailers that are not currently in the area- Kudos! Great idea. Time to really make people HAVE to come downtown and spend their money!!!

Chris
Chris

Wouldn't a Crate and Barrel or a Crate and Barrel outlet work too? There is not one in WNY or upstate new york for that matter. I do not believe that they have a presence in southern Ontario either. I think that traffic from Ontario alone could support this store. C&B is smaller than IKEA and more upscale.

PDW
PDW

I know this going to be a stretch, but they should get an IKEA in downtown. The closest one is in Pittsburgh or Canada (which means duties). But mostly, I just really like IKEA.

dave majewski
dave majewski

There are firms and companies waiting to submit specific "designs" for parcels and general areas. However, they have been waiting on the design guidelines before moving forward. This is the best way to approach the entire project. Aesthetically, engineering, structurally, etc.... we need to insure that all players are performing off the same sheet of music. Without that, we get a hodge-podge of buildings, facades, plants, colors, textures, materials, etc... No, it will not be a "stamped" rule book with everyone having the same building appearance, rather, it will dictate the style, sustainability aspects, lighting, everything. Better to take a few extra months to get this straight that to start off wrong. This has been a HUGE component that the ECHDC has stood by since the beginning: Consistancy, proper design that respects the location, theme and surrounding landscapes; and choosing from the best options - which takes time. There is progress and this progress can be witnessed at any of the public meetings rather than someone speculating and assuming that a promised development is dead in the water. Patience will pay off. It is coming, and it will be worht the wait. Sure; of course, there are going to be the pessimists that will dislike and find fault in whatever is done just for a reason to complain. But, in the end, this will be what it has, and is, tauted to be. IT TAKES TIME and PATIENCE- even after completion it takes time and patience. It is better to help and contribute rather than to negatively criticize and complain. Any critiques should be accompanied by reasonable solutions. This is what ALL THE PUBLIC sessions have been for.

PaulBuffalo
PaulBuffalo

That's a good starting point for negotiation. I'll have my people call your people.

BuffOx
BuffOx

@Texpat - Many apologies, as I can see how you'd get confused on this. I believe the original comment was to have a grocery store in a gutted/rehabbed Main Place Mall (absolutely not Canalside). A semi-side conversation ensued regarding the viability of a grocery story in the heart of downtown (which in turn was followed by a conversation on the viability of high-end grocers coming to WNY in general). Completely unrelated to WCPerspective's original article.

Also, I guess it's pertinent to remember that this article is, at its base, about a friendly gesture made by ECHDC in order to keep the Buffalo Planning Board informed, nothing more. (As per @Daniel Sack's comment above)

Texpat
Texpat

I had heard that Whole Foods was going to the project on Maple at the Buffalo Shooting Club site. Unless this is now dead, that is where you'll see Whole Foods. Contrary to what people are saying here , the demographics do exist to support it. The question is do they exist to support the 2-3 stores needed for them to justify the distribution network they'd need to make the market viable? My guess is yes and we'll see them in Orchard Park and Amherst. We'll not see them anywhere in the city.

To think that a grocery store would locate at Canalside is ridiculous. I don't know why people keep bringing it up. Do you think people in Buffalo are going to drive to a grocery store in a entertainment and retail complex where they will have to park in a parking ramp and haul their groceries to their car? Do you think tourists are looking to visit a Whole Foods while on vacation?

Why would we waste valuable waterfront land in a destination complex on a grocery store? Drop it because it isn't happening.

ReginaldQMerriweatherIV
ReginaldQMerriweatherIV

An entire parking ramp will be build for the sole use of the pizza joint and residents of the Marine Drive Apts. The ramp will consist of 9 levels of parking, including 15 spaces per resident.

Leonard Stokes' handicapped parking tags were given to Rev. Pridgen and his flock to ensure they have adequate parking once they have circled the building seven times in a symbolic recreation of the Battle of Jericho

Finally, the mayor requires his podium, as well as all 5 replacement podiums. However, a new memorial, in the shape of a podium, will be built along side the naval park as a lasting tribute to the brave soles who have donned the cheap suit and patent leather shoes to serve as Buffalo's mayor.

The Kettle
The Kettle

Whatever>"I'll bet there will be a lot less retail there than has grown more naturally in North Buffalo"

Could you expain what you mean by "more naturally"? I know the govt spent a lot to remediate the former industrial land much of that development now sits on (Wegmans, Tops, Target Regal etc).

In addition the blue and gold NYS sign labled "Delaware Consumer Square" and containing the names of almost every elected official was posted in front of the Tops-Target portion for several years after it was completed. That is a strong indication that Benderson recieved other public assistance to complete that development.

If "natural" means without subsidy, Im not sure you can say that about much of the retail in North Buffalo.

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