New Plan For Central Terminal?

Developer To Outline Ideas Today After Contract Renewal Ruled Out

WBEN Photo/Mike Baggerman

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(WBEN) The chosen developer for  Buffalo's massive mothballed NY Central RR Terminal will provide an update on his plans today after the Central Terminal Restoration Corporation announced earlier this month they would not renew their contract with him

Developer Harry Stinson said at the time he was blindsided by the decision, which came not long after the Central Terminal was turned away as a possible site for a new train station.

A new study will be conducted by June 30 on future uses of the building.

The contract between Stinson and the Terminal ends later this month.

Stinson's early proposals included development of as many as 500 townhouses in the neighborhood surrounding the terminal, with money from those sales being used to fund redevelopment of the terminal site, its concourse, and 17-story office tower.   Built in 1929, the terminal fell into disrepair after Amtrak trains stopped using the facility in 1979.  Much of it is still in need of repair, but the grand concourse has been reborn as an event space.  On May 5, the building's owners-- Central Terminal Restoration Corp. --  announced a contract with Stinson's JSK International will not be renewed when it expires on May 24.

This comes as the Buffalo Train Station Site Selection Committee last month selected downtown as the location of  Buffalo's new train Amtrak station.

“We would like to thank Harry Stinson and his team for the work they put in over the last 12 months and the passion they have for the Central Terminal,” said Jim Hycner, chairman of the nonprofit board in a statement. “We feel at this time that it’s in the best interest of the building, our members and volunteers and our East Side neighbors to pursue a different direction for the ultimate redevelopment of the Central Terminal.”

Stinson told WBEN he was "blind sided" by the Central Terminal Restoration Corporation's decision to halt the $100 million redevelopment plan.

"As recently as a few weeks ago as part of the train station process, CTRC issued a letter that said we had an agreement in principle," Stinson said. "It was just a matter of finalizing the actual legal documents and the purchase. That was, to our knowledge, the status of it."

Stinson explained that he found out that the agreement would no longer continue through the media and that while he will continue to pursue development in Western New York, he said "this put a cloud over the experience". 

 

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