Ciminelli Real Estate Corporation and CannonDesign unveiled renderings for the concept design of a mixed-use development project in downtown Buffalo. The unveiling was part of a public presentation to gather feedback from community members. Public response after the presentation was positive, and the design concept is already garnering a lot of local media attention, with stories published in the Buffalo News, Buffalo Rising, Buffalo Business First, as well as local television and radio stations.
Dubbed 201 Ellicott, the concept incorporates and blends live, work, play, and eat elements to emphasize a new, vibrant neighborhood where a surface parking lot now sits. The project includes nearly 200 apartment and condo units, divided among a 12-story tower and a 4-story section that sits above the ground floor retail spaces. Approximately 44,000 SF of retail ring the sidewalks and public spaces on both the ground and upper terrace level. Acknowledging the lack of access to fresh food available in downtown Buffalo, a proposed Orchard Fresh grocery store concept by Tops Markets will provide affordable grocery items and a wide range of fresh prepared foods. In addition to the market, the site will also include space for cafés, restaurants, a weekly farmers market, and community gardens for residents.
A three-story, 110,000 SF office block will sit above the grocery, and includes a multi-level atrium with shared conference and meeting spaces overlooking an outdoor plaza. The outdoor spaces are some of the most powerful aspects of the project, comprising just over 50% of the site. These include a street-level welcoming public square, prominent Spanish style steps, a spacious public green, and an upper terrace park. This elevated open lawn includes tree-shaded picnic areas, a rain garden, cafe spaces, a performance stage and view of a large cinema screen mounted to the neighboring NFTA office building.
“The whole project is meant to be an anchor for this neighborhood, so we’re trying to do things with the facades that are welcoming and inviting,” said Mike Tunkey, Principal at CannonDesign, in talking to the Buffalo News. “We see this as a really big connector in the city, east to west.”
Speaking to Buffalo Rising, Ciminelli Vice President of development and planning, Denise Juron-Borgese said, “With over half the site devoted to major public amenities, we believe our concept will contribute to the vibrancy of downtown Buffalo and be a place where Western New Yorkers gather for years to come.”