Buffalo Planning Board to get first look at new Catholic Health HQ

October 30, 2012 Updated Oct 30, 2012 at 8:19 AM EDT

By WKBW News
By Business First by James Fink

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October 30, 2012 Updated Oct 30, 2012 at 8:19 AM EDT

The Buffalo Planning Board will get its first official look at Catholic Health's proposed downtown office building when the agency's directors meet on Nov. 7.

Representatives from Catholic Health, along with the building's developer, Uniland Development Co. will be making a formal presentation to the planning board -- offering details of the proposed six-story, 140,000-square-foot building in the city's Elm-Oak Corridor. Construction on the $46 million project is expected to start by late winter or early spring.

The planning board has already agreed to take the lead position on the mandated environmental review concerning the building. The Nov. 7 review is focused on the building and the impact it will have on the property, commonly referred to as "Block 21," and downtown.

Catholic Health has been working on the building for more than a year.

Catholic Health will consolidate administrative, training and other functions into the building, giving the company a major presence in downtown Buffalo. An estimated 700 people may be working in the building when it opens in two years. Currently those functions are spread among eight different area buildings and sites.

"As with any major project, there are many important steps that need to be taken to keep it moving," said Chuck Hayes, Catholic Health spokesman. "We are pleased that the Buffalo Planning Board is preparing to review our plans for our proposed Administrative and Regional Training Center and we look forward to hearing their comments."

A formal groundbreaking ceremony, originally set for Oct. 30, has been pushed back to Nov. 7 because of Hurricane Sandy.

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