BUFFALO, N.Y. — New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced the state is seeking Request For Proposals (RFP) to redevelop the Buffalo Outer Harbor's Terminal A.
The project includes the sale of the land and multiple buildings, including the 550,000-square-foot building that has been vacant for several years.
The property is located at 901 Fuhrmann Boulevard. The state hopes that a developer will turn the property into a waterfront destination that could possibly include residential, restaurants, office space, cultural attractions, and parking.
It also includes the lakefront property with 1,720 linear feet of vertical seawall and 4.2 acres of deep water slip.
"Terminal A is a massive vacant structure that has tremendous potential to become a destination that builds on the success of other Outer Harbor improvements," Governor Hochul said in a release.
2 On Your Side spoke with Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation President Steve Ranalli who was excited to see the RFP get issued.
"The property was rezoned by the city in 2016," Ranalli said.
"It allows for mixed-use development out there."
Ranalli says that ECHDC doesn't want to see any industrial use on the redeveloped site.
"We're hoping to get really creative proposals to create another place where people can live and play out on Buffalo's waterfront," Ranalli said.
Terminal A was designed by architect Albert Kahn and built in the early 1930s for the Ford Motor Company. It consists mostly of storage space. Terminal A was designated as a local landmark in 2019.
The landmark status by for Terminal A means a developer can't demolish it as part of a redevelopment plan.
"We're telling people that we want them to incorporate Historic Preservation practices, as well as making sure that the building is sustainable in LEED as we move forward," Ranalli said. "We're well aware of it and I think we've got a lot of developers in town that are used to working with historic structures."
Tim Tielman from the Campaign for Greater Buffalo told 2 On Your Side that he's optimistic about the chance to see Terminal A thrive again.
"The interesting aspect of this project comes with the adjacent land," Tielman said. "Traditionally, a lot of the land there has become park use, but the building itself is a wonderful building and would lend itself to quite a few interesting adaptations."
Tilman added that he and other preservationists were looking forward to what developers come up with.
ECHDC Chairman Robert Goia said the redevelopment of Terminal A will take the Outer Harbor to the next level as an urban waterfront location.
"By taking advantage of this unique architectural gem we will generate more visitors, attract first-time residents, and increased activity - all while ensuring the Outer Harbor as a year-round destination," Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation Chairman Robert Gioia said.
The full Request For Proposals is available here. Proposals are due by 8 p.m. on Thursday, March 30, 2023.