Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) is pushing for the DL&W Terminal in Buffalo to receive federal funding in the next round of awards granted through the U.S. Department of Transportation.
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Higgins spoke in support of the project in remarks on the House Floor:
“Mr. Speaker: At the foot of Main Street in Buffalo lies the DL&W Terminal, a century-old, vacant historic landmark along the Buffalo River that once served as a bustling stop for passengers traveling by both ship and rail.
“A plan by the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority to transform this piece of Western New York’s history into a destination that serves the Buffalo of today and tomorrow, creating a multi-modal center for people traveling by rail, automobiles, bikes and boats.
“The DL&W is a project under consideration for a federal grant through the United States Department of Transportation’s “Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development”(BUILD) program.
“I stand today in support of the NFTA’s grant application for the DL&W Terminal, which serves as a national model for financing infrastructure investments delivering significant economic impact.
“Surrounded by Canalside, the Cobblestone District, Downtown Buffalo and the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, development of the DL&W represents a transformative project building on the economic renaissance of the new Buffalo.”
In 2015 Higgins released a report naming development of the DL&W Terminal as one of the next important steps for Buffalo’s waterfront. The Congressman has been a consistent advocate for NFTA rail extension to DL&W, combined with private sector investment on the top floor, which offers 75,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space with scenic views of the Buffalo River.
New York State has committed approximately $26 million to the DL&W terminal project. Federal transportation funding would help fill the gap, allowing the $40 million light rail extension project to move forward. Separately, in May the NFTA initiated a process for soliciting private developer interest in the build-out of the Terminal’s second floor.
The DL&W sits at the foot of Main Street where federal funding totaling $43.2 million, has been invested to return vehicular traffic to the roadway, including an $18 million TIGER grant for Cars Sharing Main Street work currently underway at Lower Main in the vicinity of Canalside.
The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018 provided $1.5 billion in federal transportation funding for the Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) initiative, previously known as Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grants. BUILD applications were due to the USDOT by July 18, 2018. Urban projects are eligible to receive between $5 million and $25 million with no more than $150 million in awards granted to an individual state. BUILD award announcements will be made no later than December 18, 2018.