The Board of Education cancelled plans for a second Emerson School of Hospitality in the Trico complex but Krog Corp. is apparently moving forward with its $90.5 million redevelopment project. The first package of work has been put out to bid.
Krog beat out a handful of developers that proposed locations for a second Emerson School in April with plans to be ready for students in fall 2018. The school district terminated its agreement with Krog in early December citing a lack of progress however. The developer has not officially purchased the site from Buffalo Brownfield Restoration Corp., a quasi-public agency, but contractors have been working on asbestos abatement. Krog has asked the district to reconsider its decision.
The new Emerson School was seen as an anchor to Krog’s mixed-use vision utilizing 85,000 sq.ft. of space. Also proposed are a 114-room extended stay hotel operated by Hart Hotels, apartments, 100,000 sq.ft. of commercial and retail space, and indoor parking for 300 cars.
Key to the project’s success is selective demolition work including the Ice House along Ellicott Street, the oldest portion of the complex. Demolition will create a courtyard and drop-off area while reducing the size of the floor plates and bringing natural light to the building’s interior.
Stabilization of the core and shell of the complex is now out for bid. Future phases of work will be bid as the project develops.
Though other developers floated ideas for reuse of the site, Krog stepped up with a solid reuse plan. Krog is a partner at the Larkin Center of Commerce, a complex actually larger than Trico. Vacant since 1999, the Trico plant was placed on the State Historic Registry in 2000 and the National Historic Registry in 2001.