Area businesses step up to support community

Posted at 10:25 AM, Dec 18, 2014

National Grid is funding $700,000 in downtown projects.

The economic development and energy efficiency grants will boost four downtown Buffalo redevelopment projects:  Hilton Garden Inn, the former Sheehan Memorial Hospital, 710 Main Street and First Niagara Center.

The money will be used for energy efficiency upgrades and updated electrical work. First Niagara Center is getting a new mechanical system for year-round cooling.

Meanwhile, M&T Bank is funding nonprofit groups in WNY.

The bank has selected five non-profit organizations to receive a combined $120,000 in grant funding. It will be spent on various housing-related projects in several different neighborhoods.

Including these donations, M&T has given nearly $1.7 million in the past two years to neighborhood development.

And businesses continue to show their support for Canalside and its new ice rink. Many businesses have been waiting for the $25 million project to debut.

BCBS of WNY is sponsoring the rinks, while the Canalside holiday tree is presented by First Niagara Bank. More corporate support is expected as events pick up over the winter months.