Minrad International will be relocating from 847 Main Street to a new facility in Orchard Park. Thatis some good news and bad. The good news is Smartpill Diagnositcs will be expanding to occupying the space Minrad is vacating. The bad news, Minrad canit take the building at 847 Main to Orchard Park with it.
Minrad, a medical manufacturer, is moving its headquarters and 81 jobs this summer to a 37,000 sq.ft. building in the Quaker Center Industrial Park off Route 20-A in Orchard Park. Their new building and 847 Main are both owned by The Krog Corp.
The 33,000 sq.ft. building located at the corner of Main and Virginia was completed in 2001 on a City-owned site. It isnit the worst building in the city by any means and itis hard to dismiss a project that brought jobs to the Medical Campus, but for its prime Main Street location that abuts the Allentown Historic District, it certainly comes up short. Not for lack of trying. It is a challenge to design a manufacturing and office facility to complement the scale and character of the buildings on the west side of Main that includes the Granite Works development.
Though windows front Main Street in the one-story office portion of the facility, and some articulation is provided to break up the mass of the building, it remains pedestrian unfriendly and anti-city. Faux windows were created in the two-story manufacturing portion of the building, but they come off as appearing to be the real thing boarded up. The building is set-back from the corner of Main and Virginia where a surface lot was constructed for employees and visitors. And, the primary building entrance isnit located on Main, but fronts the parking lot. Overall, it is a mediocre result in a location that called for much more.
New construction and redevelopment along our commercial corridors should encourage pedestrian activity and produce buildings that are oriented and sympathetic to the street. Buffalo missed an opportunity to construct an inviting and human-scaled building at this location that would have added to the vitality of this stretch of Main. Letis get it right next time.