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Better Look: Proposed Hertel Dash’s

The Buffalo Planning Board will begin reviewing the proposed Dash’s Market at the northeast corner of Hertel and Starin avenues tomorrow. The 47,500 sq.ft., two-story structure and parking lot would replace existing buildings on the corner, and the current store would be demolished.

Details from the Project Application:

The first floor of the building spans approximately 32,000 sq.ft. and will house the new grocery store’s retail operations. The second floor approximately 15,500 sq.ft. will contain an open eating area, offices, a community room and virtual office space that will be able to be rented by the community.

The building façade is intended to complement the current Hertel Avenue neighborhood design. The building will feature a radius corner façade, with brick corbelling, and cast stone cornice mimicking the significant architecture of the neighborhood. The exterior of building will also be constructed of predominately brick with areas of decorative metal infill panels, window systems, decorative steel ornamental railings, and a cast stone water table.

The façade details will be illuminated by architectural lighting to highlight and accentuate the architectural features of the building. Direct and direct/indirect luminaires will be used to provide a level of perimeter illumination around the accessible sides of the building. Egress illumination will be provided above all of the egress doors. The building mounted lighting will be turned off during the hours of 11pm-6am.

The parking lot consists of just over 28,000 sq.ft. of heavy duty asphalt pavement. Heavy duty asphalt is being proposed at this point for the entire lot as nearly half of the asphalt area will need to accommodate fairly regular heavy truck circulation.

Seventy-eight City of Buffalo compliant parking spaces are proposed including four code-compliant accessible parking spaces. Interior curbed, landscaped islands as required by code were omitted in favor of striped islands that would better accommodate the turning movements of large delivery trucks that would routinely navigate the lot. The striped islands offer greater maneuverability for trucks allowing them to better avoid cars in the lot.

Parking lot lighting will be accomplished primarily with pole mounted decorative LED luminaries. The parking lot will be illuminated by using 16 ft, decorative post-top type LED fixtures mounted on a decorative fluted pole. These luminaires also be provided with house side shields to minimize light pollution to the areas outside of the property line.

The Parking lot lighting will be photocell controlled which will be provide with automatic light reduction by a minimum 50 percent between hours of 11pm-6am. The site lighting will be dimmed to lower level automatically.

The walkway along Starin will be reconstructed to incorporate a stamped colored concrete “Café” seating area surrounded by decorative metal railings under a wood trellis proposed on the west face of the market. A standard 6 ft. wide walkway will bisect the outdoor seating area and the stamped colored concrete plaza proposed along the curb edge of Starin. This “plaza area” is meant to accommodate patrons and their bicycles and additional café seating.

There will be a second walkway along Hertel that will be constructed to incorporate a “Café” seating area. These Outdoor dining areas occur within the city right-of-way and they will require a Special Use Permit which requires a recommendation from the City Planning Board.

The market entrance at the corner of Starin and Hertel will also incorporate approximately 250 sq.ft. of concrete walk which will incorporate a snow melt system. The focus of this entrance is on pedestrian traffic.

Buffalo’s recently adopted Green Code requires us to provide one (1) short term bicycle space per 3,000 sq.ft. gross floor area of the building. This equation results in a need for a minimum ten (10) temporary bicycle parking spaces. We propose twenty-six (26) spaces by incorporating the standard Go Bike Buffalo rack oriented at a 45 degree angle to the curb edge. The racks are placed within the “furnishings zone” as designated by the City of Buffalo DPW and within Dash’s property.

Along the Hertel Avenue edge of the parking lot we propose a fourteen (14) foot wide one hundred seventy foot long landscaped buffer with a three (3) foot high brick and cast stone wall with ornamental fence on top and bricks piers to compliment the market architecture. The wall will align with the Hertel Avenue building face and will require a City of Buffalo Encroachment Permit and area variance.

The Project requires a long list of City approvals and variances.

  1. Major Site Plan Approval, Planning Board
  2. Minor Subdivision Approval, Planning Board
  3. Area Variance Approvals, Zoning Board of Appeals
  4. Special Use Permit Approval, Common Council
  5. Stormwater Sewer Approval, Buffalo Sewer Authority
  6. Encroachment, Curb Cut, and Right-of-Way Work Permit, Commissioner of Public Works
  7. Code Review, Demolition Permit and Building Permit

The zoning area variances from the City of Buffalo’s Green Code Unified Development Ordinance are being reviewed by the Zoning Board:

  1. Section 3.2.5.C.B – Lot Width limit of 150.’ Actual is greater than 400.’
  2. Section 3.2.5.D – Building Setbacks
     E. Interior side yard maximum 30.’ Actual is greater than 200.’
     F. 15’-0” setback from rear property line. Actual varies from 3 feet to 4 inches.
  3. Section 3.2.5.F – Transparency
     A. Ground Floor transparency minimum 70% – front façade. Actual is 48%.
     B. Ground Floor transparency minimum 40% – corner side façade. Actual is 0%.
     F. Ground Floor window sill height min/max 0.5’/2.5.’ Actual short window sills are 8’-6”.
  4. Section 7.2.2.B.1 – Back Wall/Fence – Maximum height is 7’-0 from the average grade height along back property line. Actual varies from 9’-6” to 10’-6” on the residential property side.
  5. Section 7.1.5.C.1 – 10% of interior parking lot greenspace requirement. 10% of 28,000 sf asphalt parking area= 2,800 sf greenspace required. We presently show 1% interior greenspace due to parking and truck circulation requirements.
  6. Section 7.1.6 – Type C – 5’ buffer at front of parking lot required. Actual is 0’.
  7. Section 7.2.2.B.2 – Front Parking Lot Wall – Maximum height is 4.’ Actual is 6’ including ornamental fence on top
  8. Section 8.3.3.A.3 – Parking must be located at rear of property for a N-3-C zoned property. Actual – Interior Side yard.

If approved, work is expected to begin this fall. Completion of the $10 to $12 million project is anticipated for late spring/early summer 2018.  Wendel is project engineer and architect.

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.

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  • No_Illusions

    This is a great project overall, except for the surface lot.

    The grocery store itself deserves a variance.

    The green code is there to prevent truly poor design by default, but this building is exceptional.

    It would be much better if they built a parking garage next door with some first floor retail. They could even charge for parking from non-Dash customers to offset the cost. People would definitely pay $5 for off-street parking on Hertel during peak restaurant/bar times.

    • Rain

      No they wouldn’t.

      • No_Illusions

        You wouldn’t pay $5.

        People pay $20 to park next to the first Niagara Center when there is free on street parking less than a 10 minute walk away.

        People already pay a few dollars for metered parking.

        • Rain

          Well when Garth Brooks and the Sabres start playing at Dash’s, then I guess you’ll prove your point.

          • eagercolin

            I can’t imagine Garth Brooks playing at Dash’s. Chris Gaines hasn’t had a gig in a while, though . . .

          • No_Illusions

            Well I’m suggesting $5, which is slightly higher than on street parking currently.

            People are lazy.

    • ES M

      The street side walls of the cafe need to be reworked to include bigger windows. That’s going to be an absolute dead zone as proposed.

      • JSmith37

        It’s a completely blank wall at ground floor level.

      • Better Places

        I agree!!

    • JSmith37

      I wouldn’t call this building exceptional. It presents a blank ground floor wall to Starin (the zoning code requires 40% transparency on corner side facades, this offers 0%). On the front facade, the windows start 8′ above the ground.

      Regarding parking, you *might* have a case between Colvin and Parkside, but there’s not enough action around Dash’s to create demand for a parking garage. And now that Dash’s is taking up the entire block with a single building and parking lot, that pretty much guarantees this block will never be very lively.

      • Better Places

        The windows on Hertel start at 8′ above the ground? Are we looking at the same building?

        • 300miles

          All the windows are 8′ above the ground, except for the center section along Hertel.

          • Better Places

            Then in your initial comment, to say “all” was not accurate or an intentional exaggeration to make a point?

          • 300miles

            I explained myself pretty clearly I think. In your post you implied they didn’t exist at all, which is completely wrong. Were you actually asking for information or just trolling for an argument?

          • Better Places

            Of course I am. Your original choice of wording was intentionally general, and not acccurate. You said, and I quote “on the front facade the windows start 8′ above the ground”. That is purely manipulation of the facts to argue your point, which is not accurate. Perhaps to say on a portion of the front facade the windows start 8′ above the ground, and on a portion they are full height might be more accurate. Yes, I am calling you out because as much as I enjoy discussing important issues to our neighborhood such as this project, I do not appreciate people over generalizing or erroneously stating non-truths to support their opinion.

    • Johnny Pizza

      The parking ramp wont’ work financially and would be opposed by the neighbors on the back of the property. I dislike the parking as well but what you’ve proposed will not solve the problem.

  • Mark Russell

    Love it. We’re behind the store are support this development, will be interesting to see the coop and Dash’s fill their niche.

  • JKR

    Too small.

  • Paul2030

    Why is this building, built upon a cleared lot, but with a faux facade that matches the neighborhood acceptable —- when at the same time, an Allen Street developer had to jump through hoops to save and reuse a junky historically insignificant facade? Same thing is going on at Elmwood and Bidwell/Potomac … saving a marginal facade, building a new building behind it.

    Why does Dash’s get to build fresh from the ground up (with neighborhood compatible facades), while others have to jump through hoops and preserve junk or marginallly significant facades? I actually approve of the Dash’s type newly built faux historic facades—wondering why others are not allowed to do the same.

    • 300miles

      Nothing’s been approved yet for Dash’s project.

      • Paul2030

        Good point… not approved. That said, I like Dash’s proposal, from what I’ve seen. I hope it’s approved. It would be good for the neighborhood. I’d hate to see it derailed by some odd “preserve this ancient meaningless store front”

    • UrbanLove

      Allentown is a local landmark district, Hertel is not. Nonetheless, Dash’s should reuse that great building–add another all-glass floor, if need be. Work with the building, which already “matches the neighborhood”.

      • Better Places

        Thank God when SOM was commissioned to design the addition to the Albright, they didn’t fixate on the character of EB Green. If you truly feel that piece of crap “great” building truly represents the neighborhood, then perhaps the neighborhood needs something new and better?

    • JSmith37

      Allentown, as mentioned, is a local preservation district. But please note, that this project in no way conforms to the zoning code. It requires at least 11 variances, plus they are purchasing an 8’x250′ strip of the public right-of-way sidewalk to build up, and requesting a major encroachment permit to build the parking lot screening wall on the public sidewalk rather than use their own land for it. So Dash’s is not by the book allowed and is not representative of what the zoning code requires on a street like Hertel Avenue.

    • Better Places

      What is a “faux” facade? I believe the facade responds to the space behind it at both levels.

  • Hadi Al-Jabi Lopez

    It would be nice if Dash’s incorporated a few levels of residential, like what is planned at the Casa di Pizza site. Hertel could use some more density on its east end. Perhaps in the future, a parking garage with a pedestrian face can replace the lot.

  • Upstate NY

    The surface lots on that area of Hertel are unfortunate. It’s no surprise that the part of Hertel with the most business and pedestrian activity is the stretch, between Colvin and Parkside, with the most density. That said, a supermarket is a convenience destination. If parking is a hassle, customers will go where it isn’t. Even the coop recognized that truism. But aside from that, the Dash’s plan looks great. As long as they don’t go chintzy with the facade materials, it’ll look fine and in harmony with the neighborhood. Which cannot be said about the structures it is replacing.

  • grovercleveland

    18 comments and none saying “its great that a local company that provides an essential service is successful enough to enjoy such a robust expansion.”

    Life is more than architectural fetishism

  • jfd

    No windows at sidewalk level are a shame. No connectivity to the east is a shame. Great project poor unimaginative design. Looks like a brick version of Valu hardware at the corner of Herel and Elmwood. Just because it’s a project doesn’t make poor planning and poor architecture acceptable. I’m all for Dash’s just go back to the drawing board or change architects.

    • Point Given

      Its a grocery store not an art museum.

      • Josh Robinson

        Windows tend to make an urban grocery store more inviting and engaging at street level, just look at the Co-Ops on Elmwood and Hertel. Plenty of foot traffic walking by will stop in if they see attractive displays through the windows.

        An art musuem is a strange comparison to make, as most don’t have a lot of windows to protect the collection from sun exposure.

        • Point Given

          My comment was in reference to the original poster’s comment which insinuated that this grocery store was an example of “poor architecture”. Seemed appropriate to make the art gallery comparison as there has been much discussion about architectural quality related to the Albright Knox expansion.

          • Josh Robinson

            My mistake. Point taken, Point Given!

          • Better Places

            One of the most beautiful examples of the dichotomy that can exist between classical and modern architecture!!

        • grovercleveland

          “I was going to purchase food so I could continue living, but the windows of the store weren’t engaging, so I ended up starving to death.”

    • Better Places

      You should call Mr. Dash and present your architectural portfolio and experience designing architecture, he might hire you.

  • Fly Street

    CO-OP….By the time this is approved and built their market share may be gone… CO-OP.

  • Kevin Ryan

    Nice plan.. I would recommend full windows for the entire building facing Hertel and Starin

    • Ryan

      Make sure you email the ZBA

    • Better Places

      I would like that as well. How would you deal with equipment and shelving against the wall?

      • JSmith37

        The Coop managed to put windows on the front facade on Elmwood. Guercio’s has front windows. Grocers have had windows for literally hundreds of years, to attract customers in. This isn’t an intractable problem.

        • Better Places

          You should do some sketches and send them to the engineer and equipment suppliers. I’m sure they would welcome the collaboration!!

  • Don’t fret over the incongruous design. I wouldn’t expect more at this time. Hertel isn’t Georgetown or NoVA, or SF or anywhere in NYC.

  • Wrench

    Nah. No shopping at Dash’s for me. Buying out Budwey’s to make a storage place where a good grocer is needed totally put me off. F___ Dash’s!