The Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement for the Gates Circle Redevelopment project is out for review. While demolition work is well underway, the document must be certified by the City of Buffalo before new construction begins on the site. The 270 page document lays out a framework on how the developers intent to reuse the site including the current thinking on building placement and sizes. The information below summarizes what’s envisioned for the project.
The Gates Circle Redevelopment is proposed as a multi-year build-out of the former Millard Fillmore Gates Hospital property at 3 Gates Circle and the City-owned parking ramp located at 1277 Delaware Avenue by TM Montante Development LLC and Gates Circle Holdings LLC. The project will create up to 531 new residential units.
Three Gates Circle, the former MFG Hospital site, is approximately 6.7 acres and has 13 buildings totaling 882,000 sq.ft.. The hospital buildings were developed over a 64-year span stretching from 1911 to 1974.
The parking ramp located just south of the former hospital complex, at 1277 Delaware Avenue, is a parking ramp currently owned by the City of Buffalo and is also part of the Project. The approximately 800-car parking ramp occupies 2.7 acres and was constructed in 1976. The ramp was formerly used by workers and visitors to MFG Hospital.
One of the anchors of the proposed project is a Continuing Care Retirement Community called Canterbury Woods at Gates Circle operated by Episcopal Church Home and Affiliates, Inc. It will be at the northwest corner of the site overlooking Gates Circle. Canterbury Woods will be is restricted to residents age 62 and is planned as a six-floor facility consisting of 53 independent living apartments and a five-unit Assisted Living Center (above and below).
The first floor will house both apartments and the majority of the resident common space. Floors two through six will house one- and two-bedroom units that range in size from 800 to 2,000 sq.ft. Community amenities will include a penthouse lounge, restaurant, café, library, art studio, and cultural arts areas. Parking will be provided below the building in an underground garage.
As the independent residents’ needs change they will have access to the complete continuum of care offered by Canterbury Woods. This includes assisted living at the Gates Circle community and memory care, rehabilitation, and skilled nursing care at Canterbury Woods in Williamsville.
Seven additional buildings are proposed as later phases for the site. These have not been fully designed but are included in the document to analyze the maximum potential build-out of the site. Future phases of Canterbury Woods are possible in the third phase of the project.
In all, the site will have approximately 936,000 sq.ft. of building space, approximately 633,000 sq.ft. of which will consist of up to 531 residential units including rental units, for-sale townhomes and condominiums. The remainder of the site will have approximately 66,000 sq.ft. of office space and 136,000 sq.ft. of retail, which includes an urban market and health and wellness space.
A new street, aligned with Lancaster Avenue, which currently ends at Delaware Avenue, will be extended eastward through the site and connect to Linwood Avenue (“Lancaster Extension”). A connector road will also be constructed between this new street and Lafayette Avenue (“Lafayette Connector”).
Existing hospital buildings were constructed between 1911 and 1974, and specifically designed to serve as a hospital and support services.
While some of the buildings on the site are more than 50 years old, the State Historic Preservation Office has determined that individually they are not eligible for the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP). Because the structures have been significantly altered over time, their eligibility for the NRHP is severely limited.
The proposed site plan shows all of the existing buildings being cleared from the site, as a maximum impact scenario but at this time only the Main Hospital Building, Medical Services Building, East Building and Power Plant will definitely be removed. If the build-out is consistent with the Proposed site Plan, there is potential for a NRHP-eligible building to be demolished, which is not prohibited but could be considered an adverse impact.
The project is a multi-year, multi-phase project; as such, all future buildings will go through the City’s site plan approval process or other review as required to assess the materials, colors and siting prior to approval.
It is anticipated that there will be no buildings taller than ten stories. The taller portion of each building will be set back from the street toward the center of the site. Buildings on Linwood Avenue will be no taller than three-and-a-half stories. The height of these structures may increase as they step back away from Linwood Avenue. In addition, no retail or restaurant entrances should be located along Linwood Avenue.
The remainder of the buildings on the site are envisioned as follows:
An approximately 302,000 sq.ft. mixed-use building up to ten stories will be constructed at the southwest corner of the site, but the portion closest to Delaware Avenue will be no more than six stories in height. The taller portion of the building will be set back from Delaware Avenue to the east toward the center of the site. The building will be designed as a mixed-use facility, with a health and wellness center (YMCA), a market and additional retail space of up to 80,900 sq.ft. occupying the first two stories. The remaining floors will consist of a mix of 58,700 sq.ft. of office and 162,400 sq.ft. of residential, and may accommodate up to 152 total residential units.
An approximately 133,500 sq.ft. mixed-use building with up to six stories is proposed at the southwest corner of Linwood Avenue and the Lancaster Extension. The portion of the six story building along inwood Avenue will only be three-and-a-half stories high, so that it is keeping with the residential fabric along Linwood. The taller six story portion of the building will be set back from Linwood toward the west into the center of the site. The building will contain a mix of retail, office and residential uses. The first floor of the building will be comprised of approximately 13,500 sq.ft. of retail, approximately 10,800 sq.ft. of office space and approximately 2,700 sq.ft. of residential space and common area space. The upper five floors will consist of a mix of approximately 58,600 sq.ft. of office space and 47,900 sq.ft. of residential space. The building will accommodate up to 48 total residential units.
An approximately 70,200 sq.ft. mixed-use building consisting of up to seven stories is planned for the northeast corner of the Lancaster Extension and Delaware Avenues. The first floor will be approximately 12,100 sq.ft. of retail, and the upper stories will contain a mix of approximately 29,050 sq.ft. of office space and 29,050 sq.ft. of residential space. The building will accommodate up to 27 residential units.
An approximately 143,500 sq.ft. mixed-use building up to ten stories is planned for the center of the site on the northeast side of the intersection of the Lafayette Connector and Lancaster Extension. The taller portion of the building will be set back from Linwood toward the center of the site. The building will contain a mix of retail, commercial and residential uses. Retail uses will occupy the first floor, with approximately 18,000 sq.ft. The upper floors will consist of a mix of approximately 8,700 sq.ft. of commercial space and 116,800 sq.ft. of residential space. The building will accommodate up to 110 total residential units.
An approximately 73,200 sq.ft. mixed-use building up to seven stories is planned along the Lafayette Connector. The building will be directly across from Canterbury Woods. The taller portion of the building will be set back from Lafayette toward the south into the center of the site. The building will contain a mix of retail and residential uses. Approximately 9,200 sq.ft. of retail space will occupy much of the first floor. The balance of the first story will be approximately 3,100 sq.ft. of residential space. The upper floors will consist of approximately 60,900 sq.ft. of residential space, and may accommodate up to 60 total units.
An approximately 56,000 sq.ft. residential building with six stories is planned for the southwest corner of Lafayette and Linwood Avenues. The taller portion of the building will be stepped back from the street toward the center of the site, with the section closest to Linwood Avenue rising no more than three-and-a half stories. The building will accommodate up to 53 residential units.
An approximately 32,100 sq.ft. mixed-use building up to three-and-a-half stories is planned for the northwest corner of the Lancaster Extension and Linwood Avenues. The building will have approximately 2,700 sq.ft. of retail on the first floor. The remainder of the building will consist entirely of residential space, accommodating up to 28 residential units.
Parking will be provided in several locations on the site. The Canterbury Woods facility will provide approximately 43 parking spaces for residents below the structure and eight parking spaces at grade, allowing for direct access into the building.
There are approximately 800 parking spaces at the existing parking ramp. The developer is working with the City of Buffalo to negotiate a use or purchase agreement for this structure. The Lancaster Extension and Lafayette Connector will also create up to 35 on-street parking spaces within the proposed development boundaries.
Other parking spaces may be integrated into the first floor or basement of buildings that are not yet designed.
After the necessary structures (Medical Services Building, Main Hospital Building, and the East Building) have been cleared, construction of the Canterbury Woods building and related site infrastructure will proceed. This includes the portions of the Lancaster Extension and Lafayette Connector that border the Canterbury Woods facility.
Montante’s signature building (Building Two) along Delaware Avenue that will include a YMCA branch, an urban grocery market, office space, and residences, will be constructed as part of the first phase. Design work is underway and the building is expected to be under construction next year with completion in late 2017.
Get Connected: TM Montante Development, 716.876.8899