Without fanfare, the Western New York Welcome Center on Alvin Road has opened.
The building located off the I-190 near the Whitehaven Road exit provides a rest stop for guests and is open 24/7.
The center's design is evocative of Frank Lloyd Wright. Apart from the building is a large I LOVE NY sculpture and a playground. The entrance to the building has a Walk of Fame honoring famous WNY residents, such as Harold Arlen, Lucille Ball, Tim Russert and Grover Cleveland.
The WNY Welcome Center is one of 11 planned to open in the state. Each features a Taste NY Market, which offers lunch options that feature local fare. The WNY Welcome Center served beef on weck, and staff at the café said they make chicken wings as well.
The market offers a taste of Grand Island as well: chocolate from Kelly's Country Store, baked goods from Momma De's and sandwiches from Dick and Jenny's.
Town Supervisor Nathan McMurray spent part of his work day in the center Tuesday.
"When I first saw the (welcome center) downstate they first opened, that's when I started pushing the governor. I said we should put one here," McMurray said.