Additional improvements for visitors to enjoy
Erie Canal Harbor Development Corp. recently announced phase two of the central wharf extension. The $2.2 million upgrade and expansion of Canalside's boardwalk will enhance the recreational use of the Buffalo River and improve the trail system along the waterfront. The second phase work will consist of the construction of more than 500 linear feet of permanent, wooded boardwalk, extended from the existing boardwalk installed by Empire State Development in 2008. (See map here.)
In addition to the boardwalk, ECHDC will replace the temporary chain-link fence with a permanent railing to match the existing motif. Bike pathway improvements will be made at the southern entrance to the site, including new walks and paths, signage and landscaping. The beach area will be expanded and rebuilt, while fencing will be added to screen the Buffalo Sewer Authority pump station. Landscaping work will take place throughout the site. The design was coordinated with the City of Buffalo and New York State Department of Transportation.
The seasonal dock extension (first phase) took place in 2012. The project was completed in 2013, providing an additional 520 linear feet of dock along the Buffalo River.
"Canalside has witnessed a tremendous amount of success this summer, and the central wharf expansion is just an additional reason for Buffalo residents to be pleased," ECHDC Chairman Robert Gioia said. "It is Gov. Cuomo's vision to elevate the economy of the entire region by revitalizing Buffalo's waterfront and that is exactly what we are doing. These upgrades will enhance the experience for everyone who comes to Canalside."
The New York Power Authority provided funding for this project in support of its operating license for the Niagara Power Project.
"By expanding the boardwalk along Canalside, we're making it easier for Western New Yorkers to truly explore Buffalo's waterfront and take advantage of all that it has to offer," State Sen. Tim Kennedy said. "In order to ensure that our 1 million summer visitors return year-round, our waterfront must be welcoming and accessible, and through this investment, we are guaranteeing just that."
"It's evident by the headlines Canalside continues to make after a record summer, that the ECHDC has developed a model for success," State Sen. Marc Panepinto said. "The expansion of this world-class venue and increased year-round access to our waterfront ... couldn't be more indicative of that. I commend ECHDC for its continued dedication to our waterfront and look forward to what's still to come."
"I thank ECHDC for moving forward with these significant upgrades to Canalside. The new bike paths and extended boardwalk will be welcome additions for bicyclists and pedestrians who take a trip down to Buffalo's waterfront," Assemblyman Sean Ryan said. "All of these upgrades will create an even greater Canalside experience, and help to bring more visitors to this beautiful waterfront destination."
Scott Lawn Yard Inc., with offices out of Sanborn, will provide construction services for the central wharf extension. Subcontractors on the Scott Lawn Yard team at the time of the bid, listed by the Minority and Women's Business Enterprise, percentages were 92 percent. A WBE is a business enterprise in which at least 51 percent is owned, operate and controlled by citizens or permanent resident aliens who are women.
The project will be complete by May 2016.