In April 2019, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown and Buffalo State College President Katherine Conway-Turner officially announced that the college affiliate, BSCR Corporation, had been chosen as the designated developer for 166-170 Dart Street, the current site of the City of Buffalo Impound Lot. The site is located on the western campus border, adjacent to Buffalo State Building 50 and parking lot G-20.
The BSCR Corporation has entered into a designated developer agreement (DDA) with the City, through which it has agreed to develop the concept design for a project on the site. A second agreement, a land disposition agreement (LDA) will be executed later in the process between the City and the successful developer. The LDA is a contract for sale of land for private development. Once it is executed design of the project will begin, informed by community input.
The possibilities for development of the land are open; there is no pre-determined use for the site. As a land-locked institution, Buffalo State has a rare opportunity to extend its campus footprint, while contributing to the revitalization of Buffalo's West Side.
In fall 2019, BSCR Corporation and Buffalo State requested proposals for development of the site and received three qualified proposals in response. After a pause in public activity related to the COVID-19 public health emergency, those proposals were presented to the public at a virtual exhibition on September 14, 2020.
There were a number of questions submitted during the virtual exhibition that we were not able to address due to time constraints. Responses to those questions are here:
1. Questions about the Development Process
In its communications with prospective RFP respondents,, Buffalo State encouraged open, innovative and creative thinking about plans for the Dart Street Site. The possibilities for development of the land were open; the college had no pre-determined uses in mind.
Prospective respondents were provided with extensive information about Buffalo State – including its mission, vision, institutional values, strategic plan, facilities master plan and academic priorities – to inform their proposals.
The college also shared its vision that the successful project would:
- Support Buffalo State’s Strategic Plan and Facilities Master Plan by seamlessly connecting to the existing campus footprint while augmenting and improving the college experience for its students
- Welcome the community and support revitalization efforts on Buffalo’s West Side. This is consistent with Buffalo State’s commitment to civic and community engagement and its position not only as an anchor institution for the City of Buffalo, but also as SUNY’s only urban-engaged campus.
- Consider waterfront access, green space and other sustainable solutions. The project should not negatively affect water quality or the ecological health of Scajaquada Creek or the surrounding area.
- Enhance the appearance of the campus, neighborhood and city, especially for those traveling along the western end of the NYS Route 198.
- Leverage creative and viable funding solutions to bring this development to fruition while considering future operating costs and impacts to the campus.
This language was used to protect the integrity of the Request for Proposal (RFP) process by stressing that the concepts being presented at the public exhibition -- including those that envision construction on both Buffalo State property and the city-owned Dart Street parcels -- were the respondents’ ideas only, with none endorsed by Buffalo State at this stage in the process. (Once a developer is chosen for the project and the design process begins, there will be collaboration among Buffalo State, the developer of 166-170 Dart Street, and the City of Buffalo.)
2. Questions about Project Vision
Buffalo State envisions for the Dart Street parcels a project that supports Buffalo State’s strategic plan and facilities master plan; seamlessly connects to the existing campus footprint; augments and improves the college experience for our students; welcomes the community; and supports revitalization efforts on Buffalo’s West Side. The project vision also considers waterfront access, green space and other sustainable solutions; enhances the appearance of the campus, neighborhood and city; leverages creative and viable funding solutions to bring this development to fruition; and considers operating costs and impacts to the campus. The campus shared this vision with the RFP respondents, and advised them that the project must be accessible to the broader in the community.
For those interested in further discussion about elements of the project: The successful respondent, as required by the terms of the RFP, will seek community input during the beginning phases of design and in conjunction with any city approval processes. Thank you for your interest!
3. Questions about Project Design
We so appreciate your interest in the Dart Street Project and your thoughtful questions and comments about its future design. Once a developer is chosen and design is under way, these and similar questions can be addressed by the developer with specificity. Consistent with the terms of the RPF, the developer will seek community input during the beginning phases of design and in conjunction with any city approval processes.
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