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Rocco Termini: “I’ve Got a Dollar in My Pocket” for the Trico Building

Rocco Termini and his dollar.

Tonight the Campaign for Greater Buffalo History, Architecture & Culture hosted a meeting about the future of the Trico building at Promised Land Baptist Church, at High and Mulberry streets. Among the speakers was developer Rocco Termini, who in recent years has become one of the city’s preeminent restorers and re-users of historic properties.

Termini said that during a meeting last week, the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus’s executive director, Matt Enstice, told him that BNMC would sell the Trico building to anyone who thought they could come up with a feasible plan to reuse it for $1. (How that would work is unclear: BNMC doesn’t own the building. A city agency called the Buffalo Brownfield Restoration Corporation owns it. Anyway…) Termini seemed to believe that Enstice was bluffing—that Enstice was simply arguing that no developer could make the finances work for preservation of the iconic downtown factory.

“I’m here tonight to tell you that I’m going to call his bluff,” Termini said to the 50 people who attended the meeting, a crowd that included Common Council members Darius Pridgen and Dave Franczyk. “I have a dollar in my pocket.”

Termini said he wanted control of the property for two years, in which time he’d create a plan and finance it. He said that the demolition that BNMC is pursuing would likely take two years to be approved anyway, so why not give him a chance to save it?

More in Thursday’s paper.

  • Paul Buckley

    I realize that AV is pushing the restoration angle really hard, but as I was driving down the Kensington this morning under a beautiful blue sky, Goodell Street greeted me with a sunlit brick edifice that is the former Trico building; and behind that, a tiny bit of the St. Louis Church steeple.  It might not count for very much but I think a view of the church would be considerably more appealing than a former factory that was never built for aesthetics in the first place.

    • Mike Puma

      Might as well tear down the old Courier Express Building too, because that’s just going to be in the way of the view…

      • Paul Buckley


  • Chester

    Go Rocco

  • RaChaCha

    Very nicely played, Rocco! You made them an offer they can’t refuse — because they pre-accepted it!

  • saltecks

     Did he get that dollar  from the city?

    • No. He contributed 10 cents. 60 cents were a low-interest IDA loan. The remaining 40 cents are subsidized by a tax incentive. 

  • Melanie Shorey

    Except that this building is on the NATIONAL REGISTER because of its importance to BUFFALO history. Tricontinental, home on the first windshield wipers…WHY are we letting the medical campus just have this one because no ones paying attention? Next on the list of BNMC demos for PARKING will be the CHURCH steeple!! Have you never seen this episode? Tune in…