By Giovanni Centurione
With the wish for other national retailers to follow Bass Pro to our downtown waterfront, isn't it time we look at our already large vacant structures and market them nationally?
In larger cities such as NYC and Chicago, a building as large and glamorous as 620 Main Street in our Theater District would be marketed as 'Flagship Retail Ready'. Can anyone other than me imagine a name such as H&M, ZARA, or even Barnes & Noble locating in this building?
620 Main Street has a long history in business and retail. It was designed in a neoclassical style by Esenwein & Johnson in 1919, and built by Thomas Dickinson. Mr. Dickinson was a journeyman who came to this country with his parents in 1836, from Leicester, England. His original store was located just down the street at 370 Main in 1849, then relocated to 254 Main Street in 1865.
In 1919, Thomas filed plans for a new building at 618-620 Main Street, at an estimated cost of $88,000. The store remained at this location until 1949, when they relocated to Delaware Avenue.
The next business to locate at 620 Main was, Martin Jacobi, a men's clothing store that remained in this location until 1982.
The building was then sold to Buffalo Savings Bank and later to Levy, King and White (now defunct), an advertising company who, in 1984, restored the facade and renovated the interior. You may have noticed the Levy, King and White name over the Main Entrance. It's not the original name of the building, as I once thought.
Soon after, it became home to Reciprocal Inc., an e-commerce company that moved out in early 2001, followed by the last tenant, Appraisal.com Inc., and it has been vacant since 2008.
From the current looks of this building, it's in perfect shape, and ready for business. I can totally see this being home to an Anchor store - a flagship destination in our very own Theater District - that could have a great spin off effect.
With traffic soon to come back to the 600 block, and our residential base continuing to grow, retail is next.
The total space breaks down as follows: 3rd Floor, 4,225 sf; 2nd Floor, 4,290 sf; 1st Floor, 4,510 sf; lower level, 5,225 sf; for a total of: 18,250 sf. There is a main entrance on Main Street and a rear entrance that leads to a parking lot off of Pearl Street, with room for ten parking spaces. This is being advertised as single use only, to rent or buy. Rent is $12,000 a month, or the building can be purchased for $1.2 million.
Contact: Donna Kostrzewski
[Correction: It was first reported that in the early 1900s Eric Mower and Assoc. bought the building. EMA only occupied the building, but never bought it.]