Developers present multi-million dollar Buffalo Outer Harbor plan to city’s planning board

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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Three years after developers first introduced plans to turn the former Freezer Queen site into a mixed-use site, representatives were back in front of the Buffalo Planning Board Monday with revisions.

Queen City Landing developers are looking to build a 20-story building with more than 200 apartments and two restaurants on Fuhrmann Boulevard along the city’s waterfront.

“The refinements to the project have been very dramatic and very positive,” said Queen City Landing spokesperson Phil Pantano. “The building height has been reduced by some 48 feet. The overall project site has been reduced by some 30,000 or 20,000 square feet.”

The problem? Under Buffalo’s Green Code, buildings near the waterfront can only be six stories, or 90 feet high.

But developers aren’t giving up.

Representatives say they’re filing this under a Planned Unit Development, also known as a PUD, which would allow the Green Code to be modified for this project.

But some say this action shouldn’t be allowed, and that these plans don’t fall under the definitions of PUD.

“A planned unit development is not one big tower on a 20-acre site,” said lawyer Arthur Giancalone. “A Planned Unit Development is integrating a number of buildings and a number of uses in a creative, efficient way.”

This plan must first be approved by the planning board before it’s then handed off to the Buffalo Common Council.

Councilmembers will be holding a public hearing on this issue Tuesday afternoon at 1 p.m. in their chambers.

Queen City Landing representatives say despite the controversy, they plan to have shovels in the ground this spring.

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