It’s not exactly Grand Central Terminal, but the newsstand scheduled to open in January will offer a Manhattan touch to a Metro Rail stop opening in Allen-Medical Campus Station.
Grab and Go Newsstands Inc. will offer newspapers, coffee, sandwiches, cappucinos, protein shakes and more at a street level stand inside the new station at the base of the $375 million University at Buffalo’s Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, also slated to open in January.
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority has awarded the competitive bid contract to Ahmed Adhadhari of Grab and Go., establishing the first retail stand in the Buffalo subway since its opening in 1985.
“We’re interested in customer service and see this as a great place,” said Helen Tederous, NFTA spokeswoman. “There’s definitely a need for it, and we were happy to work out a deal with a local vendor.”
Allen-Medical Campus Station will occupy a new role for Metro Rail. The old station has been incorporated into the new medical school, where about 2,000 UB students, faculty and staff are expected to converge each day when classes begin Jan. 8.
“The students there will benefit from it and the big city feel,” Tederous said. “It’s a nice benefit for our riders.”
Medical Campus and NFTA officials have long envisioned Allen-Medical Campus Station as a portal to the complex, where 17,000 people are projected to work within the next few years even though there are not 17,000 places to park. Employees and students are encouraged to use public transit, and it is now expected that thousands of commuters will pass through the station each day as Medical Campus activity expands.
The stand is also seen as the kind of new, small business the Medical Campus will generate, Tederous added.
Adhadhari, who already leases a Grab and Go stand from the NFTA at its downtown bus terminal, said his new effort in currently unused space will resemble the stands found in many New York City stations and transit hubs.
“We’ll have all kinds of supplies for the students ‑ anything they need,” he said.
The NFTA has approved a five-year lease for 250 sq. ft. of space at $12,000 per year or 10 percent of gross sales, whichever is greater.