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Five banks increase Buffalo reuse funding pool to $9 million

by chocieni
Wed, Dec 16th 2015 08:00 am

Five banks increase Buffalo reuse funding pool to $9 million

Dec 15, 2015, Business First - Jim Fink

TM Montante's $8 million Planing Mill building on Elm Street is cited as an example of the funding provided by the Buffalo Building Reuse Project.

A joint venture between the City of Buffalo and the Buffalo Niagara Partnership to encourage more private sector-driven development in the city's central business district has received a financial boost.

Representatives from both the city and the Partnership announced that five area banks will provide additional funding to the Buffalo Building Reuse Project to provide gap financing for as many as 10 projects annually. The increased funding, which is now in the $9 million range, came after Evans Bank. First Niagara Bank, HSBC Bank,KeyBank and M&T Bank along with the New York Business Development Corp. agreed to expand their financial support.

When the program was first announced three years ago, it was funded through a $3 million allocation from Buffalo and Empire State Development.

The agreement was crafted, in large part, to negotiations overseen by Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown and Dottie Gallagher-Cohen, Buffalo Niagara Partnership president and CEO.

Among the projects that have been aided by the program was TM Montante's $8 million Planing Mill building on Elm Street which has a mix of offices and market-rate apartments. Montante received a $750,000 allocation through the program.

"The Planing Mill project was physically and financially challenging," Christian Campos, TM Montante Development president. "The building was in a state of disrepair and we were faced with significant financing gap."

Campos said the allocation was critical to making the Planing Mill work financially.

"The bridge loan enabled us to achieve that vision," Campos said.

The next BBRP funding cycle begins on Jan. 1 and is being administered by the Buffalo Urban Development Corp. Information can be found at www.buffalourbandevelopment.com.


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