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Ciminelli kicks off construction on West End townhome project

Ciminelli Real Estate Corp. will kick off construction on its new West End townhouse project in the Waterfront Village on Thursday, bringing 20 new for-sale residential units to one of the last remaining large parcels in that neighborhood.

The Buffalo-based developer will start the first phase of work on the $20 million project, which was approved by the city in July 2018 but could not proceed until the state Attorney General's office signed off last month on the condo sales, allowing Ciminelli to start marketing the units through Hunt Real Estate Corp.

Located at 240-260 Lakefront Blvd., the luxury project will sit on a 2.4-acre L-shaped parcel, near Ojibwa Circle. Each three-story unit will have three bedrooms, 3 1/2 bathrooms, a two-car attached garage and between 2,700- and 3,500 square feet of living space.

Prices will start at $850,000, with the first units slated for completion and occupancy by spring 2020. Already, two units are under contract, and Hunt Chief Operating Officer Charlie Hunt said he expects individual prices could reach $1.5 million, depending on the finishes and features that homeowners choose.

"Our initial response has been very strong... surprisingly strong, given the price points," he said.

Ciminelli receives go-ahead to start selling waterfront town homes

The project - which was designed by Carmina Wood Morris and is being built by Hayes Construction - achieves a goal set by the city and its Buffalo Urban Renewal Agency, to complete the long-awaited development of Waterfront Village.

Ciminelli purchased the property in July following a request-for-proposals and multi-year planning process that began in 2015, after two prior failed attempts by the city to find a developer for the parcel. Multiple public and neighborhood meetings took place, as Ciminelli worked with the city and neighbors to overcome obstacles and resistance, focused around the height, density and setback of the project.

"We’re fortunate enough to be doing this great project here on really the last great significant piece of land here in the Waterfront Village," said Paul Ciminelli, CEO of the development firm. "It took a long time to get there, but it’s a project that we think we’re very proud of."

Full completion, after three phases of construction, is expected by 2022. The new development will result in more than $336,000 a year in additional tax revenues for the city, officials said.

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