Construction Watch: Educational Opportunity Center

The finishing touches are being applied to the exterior of the new Educational Opportunity Center (EOC) on Ellicott Street just south of Goodell. The four-story building is connected to UB’s Downtown Gateway complex, the former M. Wile factory. 
The new EOC building will replace its current location at 465 Washington Street and allow the EOC to significantly expand its services, which include programming in remedial and academic preparation, as well as specific job training programs in allied health, life sciences, information technology and environmental industries. 

EOC-12.jpg

EOC-13.png

Designed by Holt Architects of Ithaca under the oversight of the State University Construction Fund, the $46 million building is skinned with environmentally friendly, durable fiber cement panels and glass. Savarino Cos. is building the 68,000 sq.ft. facility and Cannon Design is the construction manager.
The building is targeting LEED Gold certification and will be a model of sustainable construction.

About the author  ⁄ WCPerspective

Buffalo and development junkie currently exiled in California.

29 comments
davvid
davvid

Of all the things my tax money could be spent on I prefer it to be spent on education.

buffknut
buffknut

Maybe it's just me and I'm not too bright, but doesn't it bother anyone that we taxpayers are shelling out $46 Million for a bunch of classrooms? I mean, with all the college campuses in the area and all the vacant buildings, we couldn't find a spot for glorified classrooms? And that's just the capital cost. How much do our taxes have to pay annually for maintenance of another new building?

Does any meaningful revenue come from this to offset the huge cost?

No_Illusions
No_Illusions

UB South was built to be similar to Trinity College in Dublin...which has no buildings over 4 stories. Besides there are several newer buildings at UB south over 6 floors...

sbrof
sbrof

South and north campus have plenty of room for expansion. While the huge surge of the 60s did prompt north to be built, being out of room was in no way the decision maker for building downtown. And there are tons of buildings taller than 4 stories on north. Nsc, Clemens, Cooke, hoch, obrian.

sbrof
sbrof

Front for is on Ellicott

sbrof
sbrof

There is a two story atrium connecting the EOC to the M Wile building. It will be a very noticeable front door to the street.

LancasterPat
LancasterPat

First floor space for small business would have been nice. None of the new builds in town seem to have that. Space for a dry cleaners, Subway, diner, insurance agengy, law firm or deli.

Old First Ward
Old First Ward

At first look, I thought it was a renovation of the bus terminal downtown.

BuffaloBobZ
BuffaloBobZ

Eh. It's ok. Its not great, its not bad. In general I like the canon designs recently. Im more excited for the continued renewal of downtown, and if this adds to it (which it does) it gets a pass for me.

davvid
davvid

It looks like a decent building to me. Its not outstanding but it does seem like one of those modest well-considered contemporary buildings that will help Downtown transition. I almost want to put in the same class as 285 Deleware Avenue.

Tim
Tim

I like it. It's interesting and was executed well.

paulsobo
paulsobo

No, but from my point of view...

-UB South Campus made the mistake of building 1-4 stories and ran out of room creating the need for Amherst.

-UB Amherst made the mistake of building most of its buildings 1-4 stories and they ran out of room in their CORE campus creating the need for downtown.

Now they are doing the same thing downtown...and worse...low income housing is filling in areas where Life Sciences Campus should be expanding.

Use the land we have and create great spaces on that land.

JSmith
JSmith

So where is the front door? On Ellicott, or Washington? I thought Ellicott was supposed to be the "front" for these new medical campus buildings and Washington is being treated as sort of a back alley.

I'm kind of amused by people saying this looks new and progressive. It looks very mid-century to me, like the Central Library or McKinley HS.

travelman
travelman

Unbelievable, you bitch when something gets torn down, you bitch when it remains a vacant lot and now you bitch because you don't like the design. I'm thrilled we're seeing progress and that we are being a bit more progressive in our architectural choices (Federal Building, Kaleida Health etc). You nay sayers really need start working on some positive posts for a change.

5to81ALLDAY
5to81ALLDAY

Steve Jobs called, he wants his original prototype for his Macintosh back

Jay D
Jay D

The main entrance is actually on the other side of the building. It is also connected to the building in front of it.

elmdog
elmdog

Are there jobs created from the build out? Or are they being transferred from another part of the city or campus?

Smashingt
Smashingt

The EOC on washington should be converted to loft space. Could use a little cleaning up too.

No_Illusions
No_Illusions

Because it makes economic sense to build it to 10 floors when 6 of them would be unoccupied. Are you propose that Buffalo does what China does and build entire ghost cities of sky scrapers without the demand for space? That is pretty unsustainable.

Buffalo is much better off building mid-rises to fill in the missing gaps, rather than one or two high rises.

charger
charger

I bet it won't be vacant for long.

grad94
grad94

can't tell for sure from the rendering, but it looks like it has a terrible connection to the street. the entrance appears to be a dark recess under the projecting upper floors. if so, very '70s and very bad.

The Boss
The Boss

Looks like a giant computer from the 80's

Jesse
Jesse

So there will be a newly-empty building on Washington then? Just what that stretch needs...

Travelrrr
Travelrrr

I take that back--the newbuild (schools) at Lincoln and Great Arrow and McKinley HS are well-done, as are some of the newbuilds at the medical campus. These are exceptions to the rule, however.

Travelrrr
Travelrrr

I like it. Good urban form.

I have yet to see a Buffalo firm churn out anything new that is remotely as interesting as this. Thanks for raising the bar, Holt.

paulsobo
paulsobo

Suburban...look how much land it uses...sasd

4 stories.,,will Buffalo ever exceed the 4 story barrier

john.straubinger@gmail.com
john.straubinger@gmail.com

Thanks for the update. I've been wondering about this building. I'm looking forward to seeing this building in the context of Goodell St and the M. Wile Building next to it. By itself, it looks narrow, almost like the squirter on the top of a Windex bottle.

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