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Prime parcel on Buffalo River adjacent to Riverworks to be auctioned

A prime piece of waterfront real estate in downtown Buffalo, with frontage along a stretch of the Buffalo River in the midst of fresh entertainment and economic activity, is going up for public auction next month.

The 13-acre parcel at 201 Ganson St. is located next door to the new ice rinks at Buffalo Riverworks and across the river from the Ohio Street redevelopment area.

The former industrial property has five buildings, totaling 54,544 square feet, and it includes almost 2,000 feet of riverfront, as well as 851 feet along Ganson.

“It’s got a ton of frontage on the Buffalo River. It’s right next door to the Riverworks project,” said Cash Cunningham, whose company is auctioning the site. “It should bring some significant interest.”

Built in 1945, it was originally used as a shipbuilding facility by American Ship Builders, but more recently housed tree-cutting firm Man O’ Trees, which went out of business two years ago in the wake of mounting legal and financial woes after the firm’s bonding company had to step in to ensure work was completed.

The property is still owned by Man O’ Trees owner David C. Pfeiffer, who bought it in March 2007 from an affiliate of marine construction firm Bidco Marine Group, which operated from the site before Man O’ Trees, but later moved to 220 Katherine St.

Pfeiffer had assumed the $2 million mortgage as part of the purchase, and refinanced it a year later. But with his business closed, he no longer has a need for the property, and still has bills to pay, including his $1.5 million mortgage from Five Star Bank.

The live auction will be held at the site on June 17, starting at 10 a.m.