The 500 Seneca Street project is located in Buffalo’s emerging Hydraulics District, formerly a warehouse district that is now experiencing successful redevelopment activity. 500 Seneca Street presented an opportunity to take a vacant warehouse and transform it into a large mixed-use building to help continue the area’s revitalization. However, this project presented a number of unique challenges.
The site, which was a confirmed brownfield, required environmental remediation before construction could begin. Additionally, the large scale of the project and the fact that the site was deemed historically significant, requiring construction to adhere to strict guidelines, called for a development team with the financial strength, experience, and capacity to complete a project of this nature. It also required a lender who understood the history of the community and the importance of investing in its growth.
The project was CPC’s first with 500 Seneca Street, LLC’s development team, comprising Sam Savarino, David Franjoine, Dennis Franjoine and Robert Zuchlewski, who together have decades of construction and development experience in Western New York. With a $24 million construction loan from CPC that included a $9 million Citibank participation and a SONYMA-insured $18.68 million permanent loan through the New York State CRF, the development team was able to fund the conversion to a mixed-use property featuring 98 apartments affordable to the local workforce, as well as 110,000 square feet of new office and retail space.
This partnership transformed a vacant warehouse on a brownfield site into a positive resource that provides housing and economic opportunity to the community.