For Sale: Well Used Police Headquarters
Over the past few years there's been a trend of taking older buildings in the downtown area and redeveloping them into something new and different. It's been a successful venture for the most part, and has been helped to some extent, contribute to Buffalo's economic resurgence.
At one time a thriving production hub and regional economic driver, Buffalo's labor market imploded as it's manufacturing base faded away. With the mass departure of employers, it left Buffalo with a lack of jobs, which also meant empty buildings downtown. What do you do with those buildings? Tear them down or try and fill them with new businesses?
If you're smart (and clearly the people doing this are, because they've been very successful), you turn them into apartments or breweries or restaurants. After all, those buildings have a history and a story, which gives them character. That character is sought out a lot of times to help sell the concept of the redevelopment.
That character is great, if you live in a loft like the AM&S's Warehouse Lofts or it gets turned into a restaurant or brewery. But what about the old Buffalo Police Department headquarters; would you be OK with living in a loft/apartment knowing what the building's former life was?
Now, no one has said they're going use that building for this specifically, but the building is going up for sale on November 26. Weeks ago, the Buffalo police moved their headquarters from the Franklin St. building to the former Michael J. Dillon U.S. Courthouse. Mayor Byron Brown said, "It's time for this historic structure to get a new lease on life as part of Buffalo's vibrant downtown."
What exactly that new lease on life will be is anyone's guess, but it's not unthinkable that it could used for lofts or apartments. And while it's not to the level of an old hospital or mental institution, it does present a little bit of uncertainty. At least it is for me. Who knows what's happened there over the years? Life is stranger than fiction sometimes.