Developer Doug Jemal Purchases Statler From Croce Family

Jemal adds to Buffalo projects that include Seneca One Tower

Brendan Keany
May 28, 2020 - 10:24 am

BUFFALO (WBEN) - On Thursday morning, city officials and prominent Buffalo developer Doug Jemal held a rather emotional press conference in Niagara Square to formally announce that Jemal has purchased the Statler building.

Since 2011, Statler City had been owned by the late Mark Croce, who tragically lost his life in a helicopter crash in January.

Mark's wife, Jessica Croce, is excited that Jemal will continue her late husband's legacy in Downtown Buffalo.

"We signed papers yesterday and Doug is going to be taking over the Statler," she began. "I'm so grateful that Doug is taking Mark's vision with the Statler and taking it to another level."

Jemal said repeatedly that this is all new to him and didn't give concrete ideas for what he intends to do. However, he noted that Croce's vision was to have the Statler be a part of the convention center, and he shares that vision. Jemal is already in the process of redeveloping Seneca One Tower and the former Buffalo Police headquarters on Franklin Street.

"I don't own the Statler, and I didn't buy the Statler - I'm just a caretaker," said Jemal. "All of us here today are just nothing more than caretakers. Do the right thing and pass it on to the next generation. We're very fortunate that Mark had the vision to save this gem."

The City also unveiled street signs as they’re renaming the portion of Genesee Street between Franklin and Niagara Square to Croce Way.

Croce Way

Croce Way

"The Statler Building would not be standing today if it was not for the herculean efforts of Mark Croce," said Mayor Byron Brown.

Listen to the full press conference below:

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