Jet boat, hotel gain Niagara County IDA backing

August 15, 2013 Updated Aug 15, 2013 at 10:29 AM EDT

By James Fink, Buffalo Business First

...

Jet boat, hotel gain Niagara County IDA backing

August 15, 2013 Updated Aug 15, 2013 at 10:29 AM EDT

Plans to bring a new jet boat tour company to the lower Niagara River and the conversion of an abandoned Niagara Falls building into a boutique hotel both passed funding hurdles.

The Niagara County Industrial Development Agency, at its Aug. 14 meeting, approved incentive packages for Niagara Jet Adventures LLC and 452 Third Street LLC while also opening the door for Sterling Energy Group Inc. to receive incentives next month for a proposed Niagara Falls Boulevard warehouse.

Niagara Jet Adventures and 452 Third Street were both submitted to the NCIDA directors for review in June.

"These are two great projects because they continue to enhance a robust and growing tourism industry which our agency has been so strong supportive of over the last few years," said Lockport City Mayor Michael Tucker, who is the agency's interim chairman. "In addition, it's a win-win whenever we can take an abandoned building and return it to the tax rolls."

• Niagara Jet Adventures LLC is proposing to open a new tourism attraction that would provide boat tours from the Water Street marina in Youngstown up the Niagara Gorge to the Whirlpool rapids and back to the marina. The company is working with Old Fort Niagara on tours as well as with local businesses to offer package deals.

The project carries a $900,000 development price tag and will create 11 new, full-time jobs.

• Sheikh Elahi, 452 Third Street LLC principal, said he plans to acquire an abandoned two-story 4,585 square foot masonry structure at 452 3rd Street in Niagara Falls renovate it into an 11-room, boutique-style hotel. The $595,000 project is expected to create four full time jobs.

• The NCIDA directors also approved the assignment and assumption of a payment-in-lieu-of-taxes package that was granted to Niagara Generation to Sterling Energy Group Inc.

Gary, Ind.-based Sterling Energy Group has purchased the idle Niagara Generation power plant at 5300 Frontier Ave. in Niagara Falls and plans to retrofit and bring the facility back on line generating approximately 50 megawatts of power. The company is planning to invest approximately $2 million in the plant and create 18 new full time jobs.

As part of the deal, Sterling will construct a storage facility/warehouse on a vacant Niagara Falls Boulevard parcel to help service the plant. The warehouse project carries a $3 million development price tag.

To submit a comment on this article, your email address is required. We respect your privacy and your email will not be visible to others nor will it be added to any email lists.