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National Grid Awards $250,000 Grant to BUDC for RiverBend Project

National Grid announced today it has awarded a $250,000 grant from its Strategic Economic Development Outreach program to Buffalo Urban Development Corp. (BUDC).  The funds will be used for BUDC's RiverBend project, a 202-acre redevelopment project that is transforming the former Republic Steel and Donner Hanna Coke sites in South Buffalo into a green business park.

The RiverBend project is a part of the South Buffalo Brownfield Opportunity Act (BOA) to remediate and redevelop approximately 2,000 acres of former industrial land on the shores of Lake Erie and the Buffalo River.  Over three million sq.ft. of office, industrial and residential space is envisioned for the property.  Build-out could take thirty years.

riverbend2.bmp"National Grid is extremely pleased to be able to assist BUDC with this transforming project that will convert former industrial sites into a significant economic resource for the City of Buffalo and Western New York," said Dennis Elsenbeck, regional executive for National Grid in Western New York.  "National Grid is committed to reinvesting and giving back to the communities we serve, and what better way to give back than to be able to help reclaim some of the region's must valuable land along Lake Erie and the Buffalo River." 

The City of Buffalo and BUDC goal for RiverBend is to have it become a model of sustainable development, to foster long term economic growth by leveraging the assets of the site and region and to continue the ongoing remediation and environmental restoration of the Buffalo River.  Once completed, RiverBend will be marketed for mixed-use development with potential commercial and residential elements.

"BUDC appreciates the partnership that we have enjoyed with National Grid for our economic development projects throughout the years," Peter M. Cammarata, president, BUDC.  "As we have proceeded through the master planning process for our new RiverBend development, the National Grid economic development program has provided much needed financial support and professional expertise."

The grant to BUDC is part of National Grid's upstate New York economic development plan, which maintains a strong focus on site development, community revitalization, strategic marketing, and facilitating customer growth through infrastructure assistance, energy efficiency and productivity improvement. The plan also reflects an increasing emphasis on sustainable development, the efficient use of existing energy infrastructure, and the strategic deployment of renewable generation technologies.

Buffalo Urban Development Corporation (BUDC) is the City of Buffalo's not-for-profit development agency, reclaiming distressed land for future development.

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