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Terry Pegula, Buffalo Sabres Will Create “Buffalo’s New Front Door”

Terry Pegula (Getty Images)

Terry Pegula has been a breath of fresh air for the entire city of Buffalo since he got here almost two years ago. He has taken on the promise of taking the Buffalo Sabres to the next level, and he is not stopping at just our beloved hockey team.

It was announced today (Wednesday, August 29) that HARBORcenter Development, which is the development company with the Buffalo Sabres, will buy the Webster block, right by the First Niagara Center, for $2 million. This is what they plan to do:

According to the City of Buffalo, the Sabres agreed to the following terms:

- Pay $2 million for the Webster Block.
- Seek city residents for post-construction jobs.
- Agreed to use local workforce for construction and meet 25 percent minority and 5 percent female hiring goals.
- Agreed to 25 percent minority business and 5 percent women business enterprise participation goals.
- Pay Living Wage for employees of ice rink and parking ramp.
- Expand parking in the building to make attendance at Canalside events more convenient for the public.
- Construct a facility that attracts new hockey-themed events/tournaments, and creates new opportunities for other special events.
- Committed to public, community and youth hockey use.
- Receive additional community input.

You can review the Webster block timeline from the City of Buffalo below:

February 2012
Mayor Brown issued a challenge to the development community during his annual State of the City Address, asking them to present ideas on how to re-invent the Webster Block, a prime piece of city-owned land.

April 2012
The City of Buffalo issued a request for proposals for the Webster Block with a submission deadline of Friday, June 15, 2012.

June 2012
Submittals were narrowed down to two proposals: HARBORcenter Development (the development company affiliated with the Buffalo Sabres) and Ellicott Development Company.

A selection committee was named to review the proposals and submit a recommendation to Mayor Byron Brown. A group of community leaders were also identified to work with the selection committee to review proposals and submit a recommendation.

July 2012
Both Ellicott Development Company and the Buffalo Sabres presented their proposals to the selection committee and community representatives. The presentations were recorded and played repeatedly on public access television and made available on the City of Buffalo’s website. The public was also invited to submit comments in response to the presentations.

August 2012
The two development companies were invited back individually to meet with the selection committee and community leaders to clarify any information and answer technical questions.

Both Ellicott Development Company and HARBORcenter Development returned to present additional information to the selection committee and seven community representatives.

Selection Committee selects HARBORcenter Development as preferred developer.

September 2012
Submit term sheet to Buffalo Common Council for notification.
Environmental Review Process begins, building on the Canalside Environmental Review for the area.

October-November 2012
A Land Disposition Agreement (LDA) will be presented to the Council for approval.

March 2013
Groundbreaking of Webster Block at Harbor Center.

September 2014
Ribbon-cutting of Webster Block at Harbor Center to celebrate the opening of the ice rinks, parking lot, restaurants and retail.

May 2015
Doors open to the new, up to 200-room hotel component of the project.

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