BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — How do you turn a 70-year-old parking ramp into a vibrant mixed use mobility hub? That's exactly what the City of Buffalo is in the process of figuring out for the downtown Mohawk Ramp at 477 Washington Street.
Six different development teams have submitted plans to the city that boldly reimagine the parking ramp that was originally built in 1959. Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown unveiled the mixed use plans on Friday that focus on mobility, housing, retail, street activation and parking.
"We asked developers to respond to our vision of a city that views mobility as a means of achieving equity for all of our residents," Mayor Byron Brown said. "We want to create environments where people want to be, want to live and where they want to work."
Here is a look at the proposals.
CB Emmanuel, BFC Partners, Carmina Wood Morris in partnership with GO Buffalo Niagara/Go Bike Buffalo
-Mixed-use development increasing street vibrancy and transit options at Washington and Mohawk Streets
• 23,113 sf of commercial space with a mix of restaurant, fitness center, flagship retail or co-working space
• 203 residential units, 100% affordable housing
• 285 parking spots
• Visual activation of Mohawk Street and 1,100 sf of GO bike long term parking facilities
Douglas Development and Antunovich Associates
- Transformation of the existing parking garage into a mixed-use, high-tech community hub for mobility research and development
• Phase I - 4,500 sf of commercial space with a mix of restaurant/cafe, an R&D lab, and ground floor retail
• 200 residential units with 10% dedicated to affordable housing
• 800 parking spots in total with the addition of approximately 300 spaces
• Phase II - Redevelopment and adaptive re-use of the Simon properties adjacent to the Mohawk Ramp *400 new apartments with 10% dedicated to affordable housing
Gold Wynn and Colby Development
- Mixed Use, Mixed income residential glass tower with parking and Micro-mobility hub
• 5,400 sf of commercial space with a mix of restaurant/cafe, a tech hub, and rooftop restaurant overlooking Washington Street
• 200 residential units with 103 units dedicated to affordable housing
• 584 parking spots in total with 204 spaces for residential and 380 spaces for commercial and public use
• Integration of residential and commercial uses, with multi-model transit spaces, namely micro-mobility hubs
SAA EVI, McGuire Development and Passero Associates
Activation of the streetscape encourages alternate modes of transportation, and creates an iconic mixed-use, and mixed-income product type
• 8,800 sf of commercial space with a mix of restaurant (13th floor) and ground floor food-based amenities, incubation hub, and ground floor retail
• 233 residential units with 168 income restricted units
• 268 parking spots
• State-of-the-art building science techniques to create a 100% electric and highly sustainable building
Savarino Companies, 34Group, CJS Architects, and WGI
- 10-story building, 4-story structured parking, 6-stories of residential units, ground floor retail space, and activation of the adjacent streetscape
• 6,160 sf of commercial space with a mobility hub café and fitness center
• 168 residential units, with approximately 14% affordable units
• 489 parking spots
• Supports resident interaction with existing alternative modes of public transit, pedestrian and bike travel and it supports the City’s push toward mobility in all forms
Uniland Development Company, Belmont Housing Resources of WNY
- Mixed-income residential and retail space, improving walkability and street-level vibrancy through pedestrian-scale design, introduction of new amenities and opportunities for multimodal transportation integration
• 8,147 sf of commercial space
• 100 units of housing, with approximately 50% affordable units
• 146 parking spots
• Mid-rise towers including retail storefronts built with no setback to enhance vibrancy at the street level
• Multimodal transportation use and promotes decentralization of public parking with flexibility to add additional on-site spaces if necessary
The redevelopment project will be the first major project based on recommendations from "The Future of Mobility: Remaking Buffalo for the 21st Century" study that was released in December.
"That report recommends what the City of Buffalo needs to offer in order to maintain and attract a level of talent that we need for our economy but also do it in a very equitable way that is inclusive for the entire city," said Brendan Mehaffy, the Executive Director of the Office of Strategic Planning.
Proposals for the city owned lot will be reviewed over the next few months. The winning proposal is expected to be selected by August or September. The hope is to have shovels in the ground for the project in 2023.