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Up close with photographer Joe Cascio – Northland Workforce Training Center and Gigi’s Restaurant

Recently, photographer Joe Cascio was asked to take some shots of the $44 million Western New York Workforce Training Center, which has now reached completion. The project, funded by $29 million from the Buffalo Billion and $15 million from the New York Power Authority (NYPA), utilizes the rehabbed Niagara Machine & Tool Works Factory, which has now been transformed into the Northland Central and the Northland Workforce Training Center. Empire State Development (ESD) and NYPA partnered with the Buffalo Urban Development Corporation (BUDC), which is the owner/developer of the project, along with the Northland Beltline. Two leaders responsible for pulling all of this together are BUDC President Peter Cammarata and Vice President David Stebbins. According to those close with the project, “the two literally pulled together the vision of the Mayor, the Governor, industry leaders, etc., acquired land, had studies performed, organized the cleanup of the land, worked to secure funding, pulled together a very complicated funding arrangement, provided leadership for the architecture/engineering and historic preservation team, and are still at it for their four other buildings on the campus.” 

Stebbins and Cammarata are joined by Project Architect/engineer Watts Architecture & Engineering. The Partner-In Charge on that end is Ed Watts.

Cascio was asked to take photos for National Park Service submissions – the images were presented by BAC/Architecture + Planning, PLLCBAC is the preservation architect on the project consulting to Watts.

Here is the breakdown of the project from ESD:

  • A new hub focusing primarily on training for careers in the advanced manufacturing and energy sectors
  • 100,000-square-foot facility houses administrative space, classrooms, and industrial shops/labs
  • To train and turn out highly-skilled members of the local workforce to meet the requirements of the 21st century advanced manufacturing and electric utility industries

Enjoy the following photos from Joe Cascio, with project descriptions by BAC/Architecture + Planning, PLLC. 

^ The restored front façade, originally designed by Green & Wicks Architects in 1910-12. 

The new Northland Central Lobby, the original Factory Assembly Shop built 1910. 

^ The restored skylight (or Greenhouse) over the new Gallery space, formerly the Factory Machine Shop built 1910. 

^ The original Pattern Wall which held tool and equipment patterns and tools, located between the 1920 and 1920 Machine Shop Additions. Now, with a tile demising wall behind it separating the two phases of the project/building.

^ A new Workforce Training Center lab, located in the 1910 and 1920 Machine Shop additions.

A new Workforce Training Center lab, located in the 1910 and 1920 Machine Shop additions.

The restored sawtooth monitors in the original Factory Assembly Shop built 1910.

^ The new Northland Central Lobby, the original Factory Assembly Shop built 1910. Looking into the new “Gigi’s” restaurant.

^ The new “Gigi’s” restaurant located in the former garage built in 1946.

The new Northland Central Lobby, the original Factory Assembly Shop built 1910.

^ The restored skylight and clerestories.

The new Northland Central Lobby, the original Factory Assembly Shop built 1910. Detail of new, replacement windows designed to match the original steel window which had been removed in the 1960s.

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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