A prominent development group is moving ahead with plans to convert a century-old warehouse into a residential-based project.
The partners in the Frontier Group of Cos. are working with Buffalo officials to transform a vacant, 94,675-square-foot warehouse at 550 Seneca St. into a complex anchored by 31 apartments and indoor parking. The project carries a development price tag just north of $5 million.
Representatives from the development team, including its architect Steve Carmina from Carmina Wood & Morris and general contractor David Pawlik from Creative Structures Services Inc., will be meeting with the Buffalo Planning Board on March 25 to review the project.
“We’re talking about quality apartments,” Pawlik said. “Expect them to be very cutting edge and trendy in their look and feel.”
The project will serve as key residential bridge between downtown and the Larkin District and play off of several new developments planned for Seneca Street including the conversion of a neighboring warehouse at 500 Seneca Street into a mixed-use building. That project is also part of Frontier Group of Cos. development portfolio.
“It matches up well with 500 (Seneca),” said Craig Slater, attorney for Frontier Group of Cos. “It will be a key part of our strategic plan.”
Slater said the project will be privately financed. He hopes to see construction start this spring and the building to be tenant ready by late in the fourth quarter or early next year.
The building will feature a mix of one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom units, typically ranging in size from 750-square-feet to more than 1,250-square-feet. Rental rates have yet to be determined.
Included in the project will be two levels of indoor parking.
Slater said he expects work on the 550 Seneca Street project will be done in conjunction with the renovation work at the neighboring 500 Seneca development. It will precede work that Frontier will be doing at the former Lake Erie Freight House along Ohio Street.
“This one is a little further along than Ohio Street,” he said.
The warehouse, which dates back to the early 1900s, has been used for a number of industrial purposes including serving as a storage center for auto parts and also a furniture warehouse. It has been largely vacant for more than a decade.
Buffalo Business First Reporter