Tuesday, the Chamber of Commerce of the Tonawandas hosted its business connections meeting featuring Laura Bernsohn and Mike Zimmerman of Lumber City Development. The duo discussed the NT MomeNTum Project, which is a revitalization strategy for a 546-acre study area in North Tonawanda. It is focused on redevelopment projects that will provide new opportunities for the community to live, work and play.
In a handout, there were several projects listed as currently in progress, as well as public improvements, which should make certain areas of North Tonawanda safer, intriguing and more environmentally friendly.
Projects include 102 units of waterfront apartments and town homes along the Niagara River; professional office space in a historic lumber warehouse along Main and Thompson streets; a 20,000-square-foot expansion of the Riviera Theatre; and “Destination NT,” which will replace the old NT History Museum with new retail and restaurant spaces, including Spot Coffee.
Public improvements include new docking facilities, restrooms and picnic spaces at Gateway Harbor Park; the redesign of Charles Fleischmann Park to create a better and safer downtown space, which would include a clock town, trees, benches and a flag pole; green infrastructure planned for the northern section of Main Street; and green bio-retention units to manage stormwater on Webster Street.
NT MomeNTum also showed a map with a master plan listing where the next development opportunities could be and what types of development could fit.
Tonawanda Island, downtown and the River Road corridor were three development destinations listed, while waterfront living, hotel accommodations, mixed use of retail, office and residential, and walkable, neighborhood-scale densities were all listed as possible types for development.
For Tonawanda Island, Zimmerman presented three possible development sites. He said one development site between Bridge Street and Taylor Drive is city owned and that developers have been notified of the availability. The hope is once development begins on the island, it might cause a type of domino effect where more developers will be intrigued to come.
More information about development, as well as pictures and maps, regarding the NT MomeNTum project can be found at http://www.ntmomentum.com/.