1. The St. John Fruit Belt Development Corp. has big plans for the High Street corridor east of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, involving neighborhood businesses, mixed housing and friendly public spaces. One step in that direction will be the acquisition of 50 city-owned parcels on Maple, Carlton, Mulberry, Locust, Lemon, Rose, Peach and Grape streets for construction of 17 townhouses. The Common Council's Community Development Committee will hold a hearing on the proposal at 1 p.m. in Council Chambers in City Hall.
2. A public forum this evening will mark the start of the second stage of the City of Buffalo's ongoing efforts to revamp its zoning code, dubbed the Green Code. Suggestions from the public last fall and a thorough review of the old code by consultants have resulted in an updated version of the original land use plan. Sign-in starts at 6:15 p.m. for the meeting in the auditorium of the City Campus of Erie Community College, with a presentation and discussion scheduled for 6:30 to 8:30. City representatives, as well as representatives of the city's consulting firm, Camiros, will be on hand.
3. Pick-ups and drop-offs at Buffalo Niagara International Airport will get more complicated, starting today. The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority is starting a $1.4 million project to repair and repave the roadways leading to the terminal's upper (departure) level and lower (arrivals) level. The upper level will be reduced to a single lane for the duration of the project, which will continue into August. The lower level will be restricted to a single lane just from 1 a.m. to 8 a.m. on weekdays. People coming to the airport to pick up arriving passengers are encouraged to wait in the Cell Phone Lot on Holtz Drive, at the east end of the airport.
4. "I always had a big fear of sharks and thought wouldn't it be scary if one came on the land and attacked you?" says Lockport filmmaker Sam Qualiana. He added some local actors and Western New York winter weather to that concept and came up with "Snow Shark: Ancient Snow Beast," a horror film that may do for cross-country skiing what "Jaws" did for body-surfing. It gets its world premiere at 7 p.m. in the Amherst Theater in the University Plaza and plays again at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in the Screening Room in Northtown Plaza in Amherst. From there, it swims to the South Bronx Film Festival in May.
5. Few country hitmakers are as pop as Sugarland, the Atlanta-based duo of Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush. They've performed with Bon Jovi, done a bluegrass version of a Beyonce song and had their turn on "American Idol." The fans and the country music establishment approve -- they've sold 14 million albums and won 18 major awards. Ordinarily, their playful interaction is seen on video screens in mammoth arenas, but at 8:30 tonight and Wednesday they're in the intimate confines of the 1,500-seat Avalon Theatre in Fallsview Casino Resort, Niagara Falls, Ont. Tickets start at $125. Only a handful are left.
6. Imagination Movers is a rock band for kids, but they are very adult about it. The blue-suited New Orleans-based foursome writes all their own songs and plays all their own instruments, advancing from public television in their hometown to the Disney Channel, where they've become wildly popular and won Emmy Awards. They bring "Rock-O-Matic," their latest tour, to the University at Buffalo Center for the Arts Mainstage Theatre at 7 p.m. Tickets are $26.50 to $36.50.
7. Meryl Streep's portrayal of British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in "Iron Lady" is among the recent films scheduled to be released on home video formats today. Meanwhile, over in the music racks, new CDs are expected from Bonnie Raitt ("Slipstream"), Counting Crows ("Underwater Sunshine [or What We Did on Our Summer Vacation]"), M. Ward ("A Wasteland Companion"), Nanci Griffith ("Intersection"), Amadou & Miriam ("Folila," delayed a week) and one of the sensations of the recent South by Southwest music conference, Alabama Shakes ("Boys & Girls").
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