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National Grid Gives Genesee Gateway a Boost

The Genesee corridor at the corner of Genesee and Oak, once a symbol of economic prosperity in Buffalo that has laid empty and dormant for decades, will soon return to prominence through the efforts of Genesee Gateway LLC.  And sharing in that goal is National Grid, who yesterday donated $200,000 to the project as part of their Main Street/Commercial District Revitalization Program.  The Buffalo Urban Development Corporation applied for the grant on behalf of the Genesee Gateway LLC. 

“This is the most complex project I’ve ever worked on,” said Douglas Swift of the Genesee Gateway LLC.  “We’re using more construction supervisors than ever,” he added, owing to the sheer size of the nine-building complex.  He also noted that the project is incredibly important to Buffalo, giving him a certain sense of satisfaction in watching an important piece of downtown come together. 

Swift pointed out that the popularity of the project has elicited much interest from the
private sector – without requiring much marketing – which hopefully
equates to vendors pledging to rent space in the complex.  At the moment, no one has “signed on the dotted line.”

“This project will be a symbol of economic development,” said Janet Day, Trustee of the Margaret L. Wendt Foundation, the organization that donated $7 million to the initial project. 

National Grid Regional Executive Director of Energy Solution Services in Western New York Dennis Elsenbeck described the project as one with the right vision to make it work.

Construction is moving rather quickly, with a Winter/Spring 2010 completion date expected.

(Upstairs at the newly renovated Genesee Corridor.)

(View of Chippewa and Theatre District from second floor)

(Second floor with backwall removed for time being)


(An engineer mulls over blueprints)

(Scaffolding around a century and a half old window hole)

(Dennis Elsenbeck gives $200,000 check to Janet Day of the Margaret L. Wendt Foundation and Douglas Swift of the Genesee Gateway LLC.)

(Cover: Exterior of Genesee from their website)

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