The long-delayed opening of Falls Street Faire and Falls Street Station has been delayed yet again -- until late July.
Saturday, like all of the previous target dates, will come and go without the twin, $30 million downtown entertainment and retail complexes opening for business.
A series of financial problems and construction delays have stalled completion for the past two years. But John P. Bartolomei said Tuesday that all should be ready by the end of next month. He and Edward U. Bevilacqua are the developers of the Faire, Station, Niagara Splash water park and the Inn at the Falls.
Bartolomei said "the problem" with opening Saturday is that a lot of specialized and custom-made materials are needed to finish the interiors.
"It's really difficult to get these things in on time. I think we'll have them in time for the end of July," he said.
Meanwhile, Philip B. McGuire, vice president of marketing and sales for the Premier Resort Management Corp., said tenants preparing for opening day include a kite shop, Victorian and carousel shops, an emporium, a book and movie store and an electronic imaging center. Premier Resort is the developers' management company.
"While we still have many good sites left, which are being negotiated with prospective tenants, we have reached the point in leasing where each facility has the critical mass necessary to open the whole facility," said McGuire.
Bartolomei and McGuire said the Station's main tenant, who will occupy 22,000 square feet, recently executed a lease and will make an announcement soon. Also being readied in the Station are a collectors shop, fudge shop and an arcade.
The Faire and the Station offer a total of 130 vendor cart locations, many of which are available, and a food court which also has spaces available, McGuire said.
The Faire will have a turn-of-the-century atmosphere with special lighting that simulates a summer night. Inside the acclimatized, year-round facility, it always will be "early evening on the Fourth of July," Bartolomei said.
The star of the Faire will be Nikola Tesla's Lab, with a ride disguised as a giant alternating current motor. Tesla is the Austrian-born electrician and inventor who invented the alternating current motor.
Also in the Faire will be a giant arcade, participatory games and a 400-seat "picnic banquet area."