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Trico Building: BNMC and Preservation Buffalo Niagara

Earlier today, Preservation Buffalo Niagara (PBN) released a statement regarding the Trico Plant #1 Building. The Trico building, as most Buffalo Rising readers are aware, sits on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC). The BNMC is the designated developer for the building

In the statement, Preservation Buffalo Niagara noted that they were appreciative of the opportunity to have met with the BNMC director regarding the building. The statement continues: 
Our part in the discussion involved the offer to assist educating those involved as to the historic preservation opportunities regarding reuse of the building and the State and Federal regulatory processes involved with National Register Listed sites. Additionally we offered to assist in seeking funding to finance a historic preservation adaptive reuse study for the Trico Plant #1 Building.

The BNMC has declined these offers of assistance. We recognize and regret that, since the building is not protected by local landmark designation, the designated developer’s stated desire to demolish the building will likely occur without requesting in permission from the city’s Preservation Board. We understand that an agreement for a phased demolition of the building has been executed and may soon be implemented. It is also our understanding that no plans have been made for the immediate reuse of the site. We are disappointed that this decision has been made without the availability of a reuse study determining the feasibility of a historic preservation rehab of the building. Preservation Buffalo Niagara feels strongly that expending the time and resources to determine ways to preserve historic buildings in our community should be a priority when deciding the future of such buildings. Furthermore, we believe that a larger community discussion regarding decisions of this nature is required given the designated developer’s standing in the community as well as the historic significance of the Trico Plant #1 Building.

We wish that we would have had the opportunity to participate earlier in the discussions so that we could have provided access to such information before the decision for demolition was made. We continue to offer our assistance to provide education to the BNMC and any other building owner regarding preservation and preservation related matters such as historic preservation reuse studies.

This release was picked up and published by most other media outlets including Buffalo Spree and Artvoice

In response to the PBN’s statement, Matt Enstice, President and Chief Executive Officer of the BNMC, said “I was surprised to see some of the comments in the statement released by Preservation Buffalo Niagara earlier today. I have met with PBN and other preservation organizations regularly over the past 2 1/2 months, shared everything requested and feel like we are working as good partners. We were in the middle of discussions when this was released. Until we speak with these partners, we will have no further comment.” 

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Written by Buffalo Rising

Buffalo Rising

Sometimes the authors at Buffalo Rising work on collaborative efforts in order to cover various events and stories. These posts can not be attributed to one single author, as it is a combined effort. Often times a formation of a post gets started by one writer and passed along to one or more writers before completion. At times there are author attributions at the end of one of these posts. Other times, “Buffalo Rising” is simply offered up as the creator of the article. In either case, the writing is original to Buffalo Rising.

5745 posts
  • demetrahe31

    .”The fruit fruit recalled for a while descend, very affirmative of say.
    The leaf sky is evil foolish a foolish, of in a flash, that puts on to die general ray of light of ash to disappear to disappear from his eye Tong, he an once grasped the body of fruit fruit, anxiously ask a way:”Fruit fruit ……you just was what to say true?Tell me ……BE what method monster beats studio, tell me quickly?”
    “……Pain pain pain pain pain……Blare!Host ……you grasp a pain I ……blare ……blare!!”
    Being frightenned by the action of evil rush in the leaf sky is even arrived by the pain of fruit fruit”” of one weep aloud, that thinks that the tears that come to come right away doesn’t need to be hatched Hua of flowed out.The leaf sky is evil to hurriedly loosen to open a hand, used the lightest and soft orotund consolation way in the center of palm of hand, after having a headache along while holding of fruit fruit caution:”Fruit fruit, is that I Be getting wronger, just carelessly monster beats, not the lane pain you ……do not cry not very good?”
    Each time fruit at the time that fruit cried, he comforted of the words so come to return to return to severals.Because before meeting a fruit fruit, he press a root and then don’t look after experience of child.
    The “blare …… blare …… humiliate me again …… again humiliate me …… the host are the worst, the theest worst …… blare ……” fruit fruit small hand wipes more and more tearses and cried more severely.
    “The fruit fruit is the most lovely to obeyed most , didn’t cry or not ……”
    “Do not listen to or not beats by dr.dre!The host humiliate a fruit fruit again ……”the fruit fruit doesn’t depend on Rao not, the tears of the injustice soon beats evil center of palms in the leaf sky all wet.
    “That ……buy for fruit fruit in the evening a lot of than the chocolate that the candy stick still eats well, not very good?”
    Indeed as expected, evil this sentence in the leaf sky is a , fruit fruit’s crying a while a voice is small to get up, she sobs a nose, lookinging at of wet eye Wang Wang host:”BE

  • MTAZ

    Is anyone really going to be mad if the Trico building will not be reused? seriously pick your battles.

  • grad94

    you realize, of course, that the march of the bulldozer is relentless. every day another piece of buffalo is shoved into a landfill with no media attention, no effort to even photograph it before demolition, no activism, no protest, no behind-the-scenes negotiations, no landmark applications or national register nominations, no arguments from any quarter.
    so kindly drop the blatant demolitionist “pick your battles” rhetoric. if anything, you should be grateful that, numerically speaking, we pick damn few of them.

  • LouisTully

    So why was this pulled this morning after it was first released? Someone at BNMC make threats?

  • armyof100clowns

    grad – although I agree with you and find it to be a damn shame there is even talk of demolition concerning this building, your hyperbolic and overly hostile reaction to MTAZ’s rather presumptuous and flip comment does your fellow preservationists a disservice by playing into the stereotype that we are a bunch of overly emotional reactionaries. Don’t let yourself get baited!  I know it’s difficult not to get upset when the status quo of demolition over preservation is maintained and supported, but we are more apt to convince people of the value of preservation by being civil and advocating for our built environment logically. You know, the whole honey versus vinegar approach . . . 

  • Travelrrr

    I’d say by the number of thumbs up, Grad’s response is just fine.
    Being a “preservationist” is a thankless job. We are “meddlers”, we are “obstructionists”. We are “overly emotional”, we are “reactionary”. We are “telling you what to do with your properties”.
    Fact is, at the core is a profound care for our community, for our city’s history and a hope for the future (anyone who thinks preservation is just about “the past” hasn’t paid attention to how much growth is associated with sites that are now re-used). And, all for inane comments such as MTAZ’s.
    You’d think that preservationists personally gain by their actions by some of the hostile response, when, actually, it is the entire community that benefits.

  • longgone

    Interesting comment on Artvoice……

    Someone should explain that – when the previous owner removed the mechanical systems from the roof and exposed the entire building to the elements – Trico’s accumulated pollutants and poisons spread from the floors to nearly every nook and cranny in the building. It is impossible to find reuse for this facility because it is impossible to restore it to a non-toxic level.
    Secondly, this giant building (and the adjacent Catholic Center) blocks what is truly a gorgeous Buffalo icon – St. Louis Church. Let’s knock down both buildings and bring back the site lines that would truly make a trip to the end of the Kensington a worthwhile view.

    Any truth to this?

  • The Boss

    How can they not just look to the Larkin Building and see the the hugely successful re-use of a smilar building.

  • Eliot Spitzer

    My understanding is the developers at Larkin were offered this building but chose to pass as they don’t think re-development is feasible. Really – do you think the Buffalo market has the ability to absorb another 600,000 sq ft of ‘mixed use’ space?

  • ReginaldQMerriweatherIV

    you forgot “broke” but other than that I think you have a good start to the list.

  • 16thStreet

    WTF!?! Really!?
    SO sick of reading about buildings being torn down. It looks like “just another building” but one by one, a gap toothed smile appears.
    Like Boss said, look what Larkin did! Both, to steal from douche Fuccilo, HUGE buildings coming back to life. Ridiculous! If I had enough sick days and I would be out there, chained to the building. Maybe the occupy folks could help?

  • Scott E. Krajeski

    (((preparing myself to get pounced)))
    I am ALL for preservation and saving buildings that have a historic and architectural significance to this city. There have been SO MANY amazing buildings demolished (yes, I will admit it) and fewer buildings saved. Wonderful saves include the Market Arcade, The Mansion on Delaware Avenue, The Church, so on and so forth.
    Where I COMPLETELY DISAGREE with PBN is right here. The Trico building does NOT posess any architectural significance what-so-ever! A re-imagined Trico building with a cleaned exterior, new windows, and the most amazing landscaping and lighting will, by no means, wow passers-by. This is a prime example of why so many people think that the preservationists want to save every, and, ANYthing! In turn, a large number of people have aligned themselves against preservation.
    Buffalo has a grand opportunity with the development and growth of the BNMC. This could be the economic engine of our future and a landscape changer. The Trico building does should not play a role is preventing the advancement. The real estate/ land is worth MUCH more than this building.

  • The Kettle

    Scott> “This is a prime example of why so many people think that the preservationists want to save every, and, ANYthing! In turn, a large number of people have aligned themselves against preservation.”
    You think people calling to save a building listed on the National Register of Historic Places is “everything and ANYthing?”

  • Eliot Spitzer

    grad – you come to this site and criticize the site constantly. when you’re not doing that, you criticize building owners constantly. Can you share your address or place of employment so the rest of us can swing by your place and rail on you to help even the score?
    Thanks in advance.

  • Lego1981

    Great, more surface parking. That’ll make downtown more vibrant! …..NOT!!!!

  • Chris

    Pick your fights? I pick this one.

  • armyof100clowns

    As stated in my original response – I agree with grad’s position (I gave one of those “thumbs up”); however, I don’t agree with the approach, particularly when someone is fishing to start a pissing contest, as is the case with MTAZ’s post. Anyone with a semi-functioning brain would not post something as simplistic as MTAZ’s post on BRO unless they were attempting to satisfy themselves by provoking someone into an emotional knee-jerk reaction . . . which I think, in some ways, erodes our (the preservationist) point of view.
    Just my opinion . . .

  • biniszkiewicz

    wait . . . you’re actually advocating knocking down the Courrier Express (now Catholic Diocese) building? Seriously?

  • biniszkiewicz

    meh . . .
    It’s a huge building which doesn’t fit their ideas for what they want to do in the future. I don’t see this former factory as critically integral to the fabric of downtown. This will not become a permanent parking lot; look what’s being built all around the medical corridor. The land is too valuable to only become a parking lot. They’ll build here.
    I think a number of the medical corridor’s new buildings are more interesting than this. Though there are not yet plans in place for what they will eventually build, I bet it will be an interesting building when they do. Not to mention functional.

  • longgone

    No.
    That comment was from some guy on Artvoice. I copied the whole thing.
    I found his comment on the site being toxic interesting.
    http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/2012/03/06/trico-demolition-plan/#comment-41247

  • hamp

    BNMC should not be designated developer if they want to demolish this piece of Buffalo history.
    Shame on them. Let someone else restore this building like UB or a private developer.

  • RaChaCha

    Doing my best to reprise my comment from this morning:
    It is just silly to demo this building, especially in light of all the assistance BNMC has been offered. Kudos to PBN for taking this stand — and speaking out. In addition to PBN, the Campaign for Greater Buffalo has been trying to work with BNMC, as well, along with other preservationists and preservation organizations. Tim Tielman of the Campaign, for one, has been doing some excellent planning work with the Larkin Development Group, bringing renewed life to the Larkin District of large industrial buildings. That’s an example of the kind of planning and creativity that BNMC needs to bring to the situation with this building.
    And the big preservation guns, as well. At last fall’s preservation conference, at a session on the reuse of large industrial buildings, I asked about the prospects for the Trico building. None other than Bonnie Foit-Albert, perhaps dean of local preservation architects, answered my question. She told me that she had worked on the application for the building’s addition to the National Register of Historic Places. With that knowledge of the building, and her extensive career in preservation architecture to draw on, she said that she believed the building was absolutely saveable and emminently reuseable. Further, she said that if the community was interested in pursuing an effort to reuse the building, she would be interested in being involved.
    Why BNMC would turn away all this interest, energy, and offered expertise and instead pursue a misguided and divisive attempt to push demolition of this building on the community is beyond me. And make no mistake: regardless of their statement included in this article, demolition — not reuse — has been their aim.

  • Rand503

    Yes, I do. Perhaps not today, although I think it certainly can be filled soon enough. But certainly in the future.
    Consider two facts: The building was built to last, and it will be expensive to tear down. For what? Because it’s empty today? In another few years, it might be highly desirable.
    Not only would they make excellent loft space for residences, it could be very adaptable to offices. It’s also in an excellent location — near downtown, near the theater district, right on the medical campus and near Allentown. It could actually be an anchor for all those neighborhoods. Heck, it can even be the downtown campus for ECC.
    I see no reason to take a hasty step that we may well regret in a few years. Do we really have to tear down every building that is currently empty? Why can’t they be mothballed for a few years? Why this urge to destroy when there is nothing to replace it?

  • whatever

    In the BR article linked in tis article’s first paragraph, carlmalone commented this
    carlmalone
    Sep 21st 2007, 10:28
    “bfloBR: Just a little inside baseball, the fact is the Trico building is contaimenated beyond repair. It is going to have to come down. The phase 2 environmental came back with stuff I’m not sure people even knew was ever in there. It is beyond repair and in fact poses a health hazard, unless concrete samples show the materials haven’t leached in deep enough which is highly unlikely. It is a sad fact that Trico representatives allowed it to happen, and the City will have to go after Trico to cover demolition costs.”
    and then also this (in response to someone named Chris69 who predicted the Trico wouldn’t be demoed):
    carlmalone
    Sep 21st 2007, 14:18
    “… There are more than 16 varieties of high-level toxic residues including cyanide leaching through the concrete ceilings. This is in addition to the toxic pools in the basement which is currently filled to the top of the stairs.
    I’m not sure of your remediation techniques but there are threshold limits and after the Phase 2 this building is way beyond the threshold. It poses a significant safety risk. You can’t clean concrete when it is penetrated, you can only clean the top surface. Bottom line Trico allowed this to happen. There is recourse but of course it will take years of litigation.
    Bottom line, IT IS coming down even though it is on the national register since there are clear provisions allowing for demolition for safety/contamination reasons. This project has been in the works for quite some time and a lot of work and research has already been done. The only issue is who applies for the demolition permit at this point.”

    If all that is accurate, then even in the unlikely event demo could be blocked by folks travelrrr categorizes above as overly emotional obstructionists, I’d wonder how easy it would be to ever attract enough tenants or investors for any mixed use development into it.
    Even if ever supposedly fully cleaned, wouldn’t worry about that many toxins always be a lingering negative for marketing, threats of future litigation, etc?
    Might that be perhaps be part of the reasons if indeed the Larkin developer said no about this one (possibly in addition to not enough market demand mentioned by Eliot Spitzer)?

  • Rand503

    So terribly, terribly wrong. Of course we should preserve our Frank LLoyd Wrights and our HH Richardson buildigs. They built beautiful buildings.
    But guess what: It wasn’t too long ago that even those buildiings were considered not worth saving. They were old, and old fashioned. They didn’t look modern, or even interesting anymore.
    But tastes change with time. Even now, we are seeing value in mid-20th century buildings that were very recently considered no value. Are you really going to determine for your children and your grandchildren what is valuable?
    Industrial architecture is quite beautiful. More — it’s an important part of our history. It’s important because or city isn’t just a city of church goers, or theater goers, or homeowners. They also had to work someplace, and there is history in where people worked as much as where they worshipped or shopped or lived. It’s part of the living fabric of our city.
    It’s foolish to look at a building in isolation. All buildings exist within context. I think it is enormously interesting and unique that such an industrial building sits directly across the street from the oldest parish in the city with a germanic design. It’s a juxtiposition that probably doesn’t exist anywhere else in the country, and it says something about our city and its growth. I don’t want sanitized history like Downton Abbey — I prefer the real history, and it’s harder and harder to get real history. Buffalo is lucky that it provides such reality.
    Perhaps you can’t see that, but others do. Perhaps someday you will. But you don’t get to choose for the rest of us what we think is worth saving and what we think is beautiful.

  • Rand503

    If the building is as contaiminated as they say, then demolishing it would be horribly expensive. There are strict EPA rules on this that must be followed.
    Query: If true, then what is the true cost of demo, vs. the cost of reuse? I’ll bet you that they will hide the true cost of demo because it will probably be just as costly as reuse.
    If they refuse to tell us, then we know the answer.

  • EB_Blue

    Enstice’s claim the BNMC is “working as good partners” is specious. Enstice reportedly told folks at Preservation Buffalo Niagara the BNMC intends to start demolition on April 15 no matter what. What kind of partnership is that?
    Trico Plant #1 is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. BNMC’s conscious neglect of the building and its stated intention to demolish it for a shovel-ready site is disrespectful to this community.
    The folks at BNMC should know better.

  • Rand503

    The Trico buildings would be an excellent place for the Albright Knox Art Gallery to expand into. They need a lot more space for all the artwork they hold, and such a large building would be perfect for large installations. It’s in a great location.

  • whatever

    I’d think demo cost bids should definitely be a matter of public record before it happens, since BNMC includes at least two major partners that are fully owned by NY state govt (UB and Roswell). If I’m not mistaken, that means such costs must be revealed just like construction bids are.
    However, I don’t know how anybody would estimate “cost of reuse”, as you’re asking. Who would be reusing it, for what, how, when, etc., and would tenants be found, how many, what kind, and how much would tenants pay, …?
    Many wild guesses in all that. Such an estimate at best would be a very wide range of possible reuse costs, and even then there’s still the possibility of it sitting vacant if demand doesn’t happen the way an estimate assumed it would, or if there’s even longer delays than expected before cleanup is certified for human occupancy (if that’s feasible at all).
    If carlmalone was correct in 2007 that it’s “contaimenated beyond repair”, then maybe there might not be any way to estimate the cost of something that wouldn’t be legally allowed to happen (like if some of those 16 toxins are deep in structural concrete and if there aren’t ways to remove them…. if, if , if).

  • mikeraleighphd

    Why is the Medical Campus the “developer” for the trico building? Why is the trico building going to be demolished? What is going to be built on that site? What if nothing new is built there for 20 years?
    Why is the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus going to demolish the trico building? Why is this going to happen? Can someone at Buffalo Rising figure out why this building is going to be demolished?

  • hamp

    BNMC talks about “innovation” and “excellence”. And they can’t save this landmark?
    If they can’t find a way to save this building, they don’t deserve to get any more public money.

  • ReginaldQMerriweatherIV

    I’ll try to help you out one question at a time…
    “Why is the Medical Campus the “developer” for the trico building?”
    -They bought the building.
    Why is the trico building going to be demolished?
    -Because the owners have stated that the building is contaminated with chemicals beyond repair and does not suit their needs.
    “What is going to be built on that site?”
    -An expansion of the innovation center that currently occupies the rest of the Trico complex.
    What if nothing new is built there for 20 years?
    -That is ok because this land isn’t used for anything now anyways beyond storing a useless building.
    “Why is the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus going to demolish the trico building?”
    -I answered this one already.
    “Why is this going to happen?”
    -Now you are just getting shrill.
    “Can someone at Buffalo Rising figure out why this building is going to be demolished?”
    -Finally, no not a chance. If they remove their head’s from their @ss for too long, their ears start to get cold and they miss the view.

  • rustbeltcity

    I’m sure all the postive comments from your armchairs will save it which is about as far as it goes for most of you. “I’m going to write a comment on BRO and give people thumb’s down, that’ll show em”

  • YesSir

    It is important to pick your battles and I think if anyone so much as touches the convention center it’s game on.

  • norwalk

    REALLY….Pick your battles there are plenty of other structures in the city that are worth saving..This building is not worth saving…..With all the good that is happening with the medical campus ..lets not derail it…

  • brownteeth

    I am a huge proponent of picking your battles. This is one worth picking if for no other reason than the BNMC currently has no plans for the site once the building is demolished and it’s in no imminent danger to the public. Furthermore, if they’re looking for shovel ready sites look no further than across the street to the huge surface parking lot.
    If they can’t envision a reuse for the building then maybe they should drive over to Larkin or Tri-Main.
    The bottom line is that there is NO plan in place so what’s the rush? I guarantee any building that replaces this will not be built to the curb and have the physical presence the Trico currently has that’s irreplacable.

  • suburban_hillbilly

    The BNMC is the best thing going in Buffalo right now. The Trico Plant is not an architecturally releveant building so if it must be demolished in favor of state of the art medical facilities, so be it. It is a windshield wiper blade factory, not Henry Ford’s original workshop. Trico moved operations to Mexixo. It’s time to move forward with an organization focused on Buffalo and WNY. The BNMC is that organization.

  • paulsobo

    600,000 sqft is exactly why the Trico Building should be re-used. Who is going to build such a large building in Buffalo? Its irreplaceable for that reason alone.
    after the generations who have passed this on the way downtown, its an icon and it should stay…another sad day for Buffalo.

  • Joe E.V.

    If there’s no plan for the site, what’s the reason for taking it down? Other than rumor of contamination beyond remediation, it doesn’t sound like there is one. Just because it’s not a factory building and not a Wright/Sullivan/Richardson building doesn’t mean it is not worth preserving, especially when there is no plan for the site. Who knows, maybe the med. campus will come up with a plan for using it, or determine it doesn’t need the site at all. “Shovel ready” is overvalued.

  • saltecks

    I’m looking at:
    Buffalo Architecture: A Guide. by Banham, Beverigde, and Hitchcock 2nd printing 1982, MIT press. Personally, it is the best compilation of Buffalo Architecture (still standing and long gone) that I have seen. Trico Plant # 2 on main is included, But this building is not even mentioned. I like the building, but if it is as toxic as they claim, I certainly wouldn’t want to be inside on a day to day basis, even after decontamination.

  • nick

    Loft buildings like this are extremely popular for reuse right now, both residential and lab/commercial. I hope the environmentals do illustrate that it cannot be reused safely as this is a great waste otherwise. You will never have a building of this size at this location again.

  • KangDangaLang

    Well said!

  • nick

    Wake Forest University just converted a similar reinforced concrete structure for use as it’s new Biotech Center. I know, not practical for reuse as part of the BNMC…
    http://www.wakehealth.edu/uploadedFiles/User_Content/AboutUs/News_Media_Resources/Download_Center/WFBP_History_Brochure.pdf

  • LouisTully

    They bought it but do they still own it?
    “It was purchased by Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus at auction for $12.4 million in 2007.
    Ownership was transferred to Buffalo Brownfield Restoration Corp., a subsidiary of Buffalo Urban Development Corp., which then made the Medical Campus the developer.”
    Seems like a round-about way to do things. Why was ownership transferred if you’re going to remain the developer? A way to get $ through the Brownfield Rest. Corp.?

  • fixBuffalo

    The battle lines were drawn when BNMC decided not to reuse Trico Plant #1. I’ve linked to last night’s full interview with Tim Tielman on site over here: http://fixbuffalo.blogspot.com/2012/03/wiping-away-trico-part-i.html
    I’ve included a screen capture of the first Buffalo Rising post about this story. It was deleted when Matt Enstice complained.

  • fixBuffalo

    Tim Tielman’s full length video interview with Channel 7 is available here: http://fixbuffalo.blogspot.com/2012/03/wiping-away-trico-part-i.html

  • Nickel City Joe

    Not only is there no plan, but there are acres of surface parking lot across the street. SO, if the innovation center needs to be expanded, use the huge parking lot.

  • LouisTully

    Just a funny, ignorant comment from over at the Buff News comment section of this story. Thought I’d share in case this sort of vomit hadn’t been spewed here yet:
    The Buffalo area has remained stagnet because everyone want to preserve every apect of an industrial has been city. When are the residents that want to keep every old decrepit building going to wake up? Pisst, you’re not in the 1930’s anymore, it’s 2012. Build new buildings, modernize, then in the year 2100, those bulding will be worth saving for preservationist of that era. Buffalo isn’t England. Just save the parks, and a select few buildings and move on. What’s wrong with progress? If things don’t soon change around Buffalo, It will surely be deemed a ghost town, with plenty of ghostly buildings. Oh, what ever happened to that peace bridge that was suppose to be built back in 1990? Was it ever completed? ….No? I wonder why. Some Buffalo residents just don’t want to wake up and see the only way forward to moving Buffalo into this centry, is to let go of the past. Reminds me of the computer age, and my parents were afraid to use the computer. Now they are a wizz on it, and not afraid anymore . Don’t be afraid of change Buffalo!! Still proud to call Buffalo HOME!

  • YesSir

    Channel 7 just announced that Olmstead is rolling in his grave again. That guy must get dizzy.

  • Joe E.V.

    Should read “just because it is a factory…”

  • Nickel City Joe

    It probably is economically feasible to reuse the site:
    1) The former owner, Steve McGarvey, put together detailed plans for reuse of the building around 2003. Floyd Alberts was the architect. The plan received a conditional approval from SHPO – which means that there was considerable investment to put the plan together. When McGarvey ran the numbers, he was convinced that reuse was feasible.
    2) Since 2003, the value of this location has greatly increased because of the expansion of the medical campus. If McGarvey’s plan was somewhat feasible in 2003, it should be doubly feasible today.
    3) Since 2003, the state has put in place an additional 20% historic tax credit that can be used for reuse of this building, which combined with the federal tax credit, amounts to 40%. So, again, reuse is more feasible than in 2003.
    The bottom line is, no one knows if it is economically feasible to reuse the building, including BNMC. There has been no reuse study – which is PBN’s complaint. BNMC owes it to the community to do something similar to what Kaleida is doing with the Gates Circle Hospital – bring in a reuse expert and conduct a serious and transparent reuse study.

  • Joe E.V.

    Good question, has it been answered anywhere? It’d be nice to know who has the juice to get an article edited after it’s published. If it was done above board, there’d just be an editorial comment stating the basis for the change. NN, speak up!

  • brownteeth

    I would get behind a new building if it has it’s own architectural merits and relevant function to the end user. However, BNMC has no specific plans whatsoever. Furthermore, what’s wrong with the equally large surface lot directly across the street? That’s ready to go today. Why not build the next building there first before they tear down a very well built structure? These are simple questions that should be answered before the wrecking ball arrives.

  • KangDangaLang

    IT’S F&C(*&G CONTAMINATED!!!!!!

  • KangDangaLang

    Probably because of this little reported BRO fact….
    “Spared would be about 20 percent of the building’s newest addition, which isn’t landmarked, and houses the Innovation Center, a technology incubator near full occupancy.”

  • YesSir

    They have done one. it would be great if someone reported the whole story. I guess BNMC deserves fault for not getting the whole story out, based upon peoples responses here, as nobody knows even half the story.

  • warehousedweller

    people this building is saturated with contaminants. it is soaked into the concrete! take a look back at love canal!whoever owns it should be able to do what they want to with it!

  • https://me.yahoo.com/a/DfzYRqodiujy3Gz.HcPIzp2A1PcxMiohBw–#a9aee

    Two points here.
    #1. To those ranting about the building being contaminated: where is there an official statement about that ? I haven’t seen it.
    #2. To those who quote other statements (Buffalo News comments, etc.), please put quotation marks around those comments.

  • Tim

    Sad. Let’s take wagers on how much it will cost to demolish. $25,000,000 is mine. Its 600,000 sq ft of possibly contaminated reinforced concrete for gosh sakes. We pay $20,000 for a wooden shack… Let’s do the math. It has got to be a ton of money. What a waste, unless they can go after trico to cover the cost.

  • hamp

    All this talk about “contaminants” reminds me of the “exploding rocks” at Canalside.
    Just silly talk to help justify a bad plan for the waterfront.
    Thanks to the preservation-minded “obstructionists” we are now getting a waterfront that is unique and popular. And the stone walls didn’t explode after all.

  • Buffalo All Star

    Lets see what they plan on putting there..thats an excellent point about Mr. Garvey. He had a plan that unfortunately never came to fruition…it seems like the prior owners wouldn’t have wasted the time if the building was beyond saving.
    I do like the building..its imposing stature getting off rt. 33. Its an awesome reminder of Buffalo’s industrial history..warehouses like this (A variety of uses) are being reused all over the country.
    If it is infact contaminated…lets see some proof. If I were at the BNMC..I’d come up with what I want to put there.

  • whatever

    Although how popular it is can be argued, I very much doubt that even 1% of people who went to Canalside so far would not have done so if the original stone walls weren’t visible. Perhaps if fake stone walls had been used instead, maybe Esmonde, Teilman, and a few others might have protested by boycotting the concerts, yoga, food shack, wooden chairs, etc.
    Despite so much hype from some about how important visibility of those original stones would be, in recent years I’ve never seen those mentioned even in passing by anybody until hamp did now. And it wouldn’t even be mentioned now except in analogy to this other topic.
    Maybe if the stones really did explode once in a while it could attract people to see that during the very quiet months down there.

  • The Kettle

    Karl, you seem to be in the know about this. Is there a way this reuse study by the BNMC can be viewed by the public? I googled it but didn’t find anything.
    I’m curious to read more about the supposed contaminants that people are throwing around here as a reason not to restore this place. Typically, the worst toxins associated with a site like this are oils from wrecked machinery and/or stored waste oil. Since these materials aren’t water soluble, it would be difficult for them to wash into “every nook and cranny of the concrete” no matter how much rain infiltrated the place.
    But that’s just based on my understanding of what gets left behind when a manufacturer leaves town. If there were any other water soluble chemicals stored here, which weren’t removed with other waste when McGarvey owned it, this study (if credible) should explain where they are and how they found them.
    Otherwise I’m inclined to agree with Hamp in that the toxic concrete is another “pop rocks” style excuse to move on to an easier plan.

  • brownteeth

    “If it is infact contaminated…lets see some proof. If I were at the BNMC..I’d come up with what I want to put there.”
    You’re correct. If it’s contaminated that bad, it would be an excellent point to justify tearing it down, one that I could agree with if the proof is there. Secondly, if they also had a plan for once it’s gone then that would reinforce demolition.
    Currently, based on the information in the news, etc., they have given no proof it’s contaminated beyond remediation which would be something worth mentioning to defend their stance.
    I just can’t see this place being anymore contaminated than the other two Trico Buildings currently in use (Austin Air & Tri-main). Furthermore, the Dulski (Avant) was filled with sprayed-on asbestos and received major breaks to remove the asbestos to make the building usable again. I imagine that would apply here too, coupled with the historic tax credits available.

  • Black Rock Lifer

    Sounds a lot like the “exploding rocks” story at the commercial slip. I think this contamination claim is a exaggerated attempt to push the demo, wouldn’t be the first time the condition of a building was misrepresented to facilitate demolition.

  • norwalk

    The building roof is mostly missing thanks to the prior developer.Also its a damn ugly building…Pick your battles wisley because people begin to tune you out and you become known as Obstructionists…

  • YesSir

    The toxins left behind by Trico have leached into the concrete floor. I’m not sure it even has to do with the roof being exposed, but the core samples came up with mercury and even cyanide at penetration level of more than an inch deep, which creates a serious health issue for redevelopment, then you have a love canal in the basement from the exposed roof and contaminated water working its way down. As to the report, it’s not my place, an acronym would need to release it.
    It’s a sad story, but demonizing the current developers is not helpful, they did not leave behind the legacy, Trico did.

  • BuffaloQPublic

    FYI — Educational Public Meeting re: Trico Plant #1 Building (3/13/12)
    **Info was received in an e-mail from Preservation Buffalo [info@p-b-n.org].
    Tuesday, March 13th, at 6:00 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church, One Symphony Circle, there will be a public meeting regarding the current status of the Trico Plant #1 Building. The meeting will begin promptly at 6:00 p.m.
    – Frank Kowsky, Architectural Historian and Professor, will give a short presentation on the history of the National Register designated building.
    – Tom Yots, Executive Director of Preservation Buffalo Niagara, will discuss the option of a reuse study for the building and support of the regulatory process.
    – Question & Answer period with:
    Elizabeth Martin, State Historic Preservation Office
    Tom Yots, Preservation Buffalo Niagara
    Frank Kowsky, Historian
    Martin Wachadlo, Historian
    Representatives from the City of Buffalo, Buffalo Preservation Board, BNMC and other local organizations have been invited to attend.
    Park on the surrounding streets (free after 5pm)
    instead of in the First Presbyterian Church parking lot.

  • hamp

    The “exploding rocks” theory was given as the reason not to excavate the canals at their historic (actual) locations. Instead the city was proposing a very generic harbor plan that didn’t have canals, and didn’t have a Central Wharf (where all the crowds can be found now).
    It was a terrible plan. And we’re lucky Tielman “exposed” the exploding rocks for what they were – nonsense. Or we wouldn’t have Canalside the way it’s being built today.

  • whatever

    hamp, what I questioned is just if digging up the real Commercial Slip has had much affect on Canalside’s popularity with the general public and attendance.
    I get why preservation activists from their perspectives wanted the real slip to be used instead of what NYS people at first proposed to have a fake/replica water slip built near there.
    But providing space for the popular stuff down there (concerts, big wooden chairs, etc.) wouldn’t necessarily depend on using the real/historic slip and its rocks which don’t explode. If public space had been added to the NYS plan but wasn’t at the precise historic spot of the Central Warf, the general popularity level might be at least the same as now.
    It’s possible that Canalside’s historic accuracy isn’t what’s popular, and that its popular stuff doesn’t depend on being historically accurate. That isn’t criticism of the preservationist people lobbying for what they wanted to happen. It just seems a stretch to credit that for public popularity is all – at least so far.
    About Trico – the amount of (or lack of) contamination should be made public as objectively as possible before final decisions are made. But if anybody is really assuming it isn’t very dangerously contaminated just because the Commercial Slip’s allegedly-exploding rocks didn’t explode, that would sound like very illogical reasoning.

  • Nickel City Joe

    Even with a plan for a new building – not sure why tear this down. There are acres of surface parking lot across the street.

  • RPreskop

    I have mixed emotions on whether or not the Trico Building should be demolished. It has very large floor plates which makes it attractive for business tenants looking for 30,000 sq. ft. or more per floor. It still is very solid structurally and it is architecturally impressive. If they are going to demolish this landmark former factory just to put in asphalt surface parking lots for more single occupant automobiles than I am very deeply opposed to demolition. It is time for Americans to abandon the private automobile and support and use public transit. Even if there is a series of new buildings planned for the Trico site, what are they going to look like?

  • Billo

    I certainly don’t think there is anything special about this building that warrants preserving it, maybe at some point there was but now it’s probably too far gone to consider. However, I am concerned about demolishing it if there is not an immediate plan to build something else on the site, and also as someone pointed out earlier that the new structure may not be built to the curb. On balance the BNMC has done a heck of a lot more good than harm for the city so I’m willing to cut them a little slack on this. I don’t have a strong view on the preservation of the TRICO building but I doubt it fits well with the needs of the BNMC and the time to make our voices heard is probably when concrete plans are made to actually build something new on the current site.

  • Joe E.V.

    Meeting was cancelled, being reset.

  • YesSir

    This looks like a Fox News line-up for the left.

  • YesSir

    Who is saying it is being planned for parking? Nobody that I have heard. This is a myth.