Schneider buys old Liberty Bank branch on Seneca Street, near his Shea’s project
Brewery, restaurant among reuse options
Architect-turned-developer Jake Schneider is expanding his holdings in South Buffalo, adding the historic Liberty Bank building on Seneca Street with plans to bring a brewery, distillery or restaurant to the site.
Schneider Development paid $150,000 to buy the 3,800-squarefoot structure at 2221 Seneca St. from Bank of America Corp. The one-story building, originally designed by architect Harold Jewett Cook and built in 1921, served as one of three Liberty Bank branches in South Buffalo and later Fleet Bank until it became a Bank of America office in 2004.
The building is located one block south of the former Shea’s Seneca theater, where Schneider already is engaged in a full rehabilitation project.
“This building is a hidden gem and acquiring it was an easy decision,” Schneider, president of Schneider Development and CEO of Schneider Family of Services, said in a statement announcing the purchase. “The activity and interest surrounding Seneca Street, especially since we announced Shea’s Seneca, has been amazing and we think this building will only add to the vibrancy that is taking shape on the street right before our eyes.”
At Shea’s Seneca, Schneider is converting the 48,000-square-foot former theater building into 21 apartments and space for four commercial tenants, including Public Coffee and Espresso, Second Generation Theater and Classic Banquets. It’s slated to open in late summer 2018.
The developer hopes the new venture will complement the $9 million Shea’s project, as well as other redevelopment along Seneca, to maintain the growing revival of the South Buffalo commercial corridor. Besides Schneider, other developers working in South Buffalo include Karl Frizlen and Hook & Ladder Development.
Schneider said workers will uncover historic architectural details of the building that have been hidden for decades. For example, a drop ceiling conceals 30-foot ceilings with
Taylor Devices profits from Asian construction
A rebound in its Asian construction markets helped Taylor Devices boost its first-quarter profits by 44 percent, the North Tonawanda shock absorber manufacturer said Thursday.
The company’s sales grew by 14 percent to $6.6 million during the quarter that ended in August, compared with $5.8 million a year earlier, as its revenue from Asian projects rose by 30 percent. Sales of Taylor dampers for bridge and construction projects improved by 22 percent.
Taylor Devices’ profits improved to $301,747, or 9 cents per share, from $209,834, or 6 cents per share, a year ago. The company’s backlog of orders increased slightly to $21.6 million at the end of August, up from $21.3 million a year ago.
“We are hopeful for improved sales and profitability levels this year,” said Douglas P. Taylor, the company’s president, in a statement.
One building that uses Taylor Devices dampers to help protect it from seismic damage, the Torre Mayor building in Mexico City, had no structural damage during the city’s recent earthquake, Douglas Taylor said.
Malware haunts Equifax
Equifax has taken one of its web pages offline following a report that an independent security researcher encountered malicious links during multiple visits to the company’s website.
“We are aware of the situation identified on the equifax.com website in the credit report assistance link,” Equifax spokesman Wyatt Jefferies said in a statement.
On Thursday, Ars Technica reported that security analyst Randy Abrams was prompted to download fraudulent Adobe Flash updates when he visited the Equifax website to contest his credit report. Abrams determined that when those updates were clicked, adware would infect a visitor’s computer. Abrams also encountered those links during at least three subsequent visits, according to Ars Technica.
Target to use voice service
Target, looking to keep pace with Walmart Stores and Amazon.com, is expanding its pact with Google’s shopping service to the entire U.S. and will soon add voice-activated smartphone purchases.
The nationwide home-delivery service broadens an offering that’s been available in New York City and California for the past few years. Soon, shoppers will also be able to buy Target goods like Cat & Jack kids’ apparel and Archer Farms food by voice over some Android and Apple phones.
The move is Target’s latest attempt to attract more online shoppers as the holidays approach. In August, it acquired a software company that manages local and same-day deliveries. For Google, the deal extends the appeal of its online mall.
original plasterwork, while bricks cover ornate stained-glass windows.
“At some point, a number of the original architectural details were enclosed,” Schneider said. “We will bring all of these elements back to the forefront of the building’s design. It should look really special by the time we are done.”
The bank also features the original walk-in vault and security deposit boxes, which could be incorporated into the redesign, Schneider said. “It will depend on what type of tenant we secure for the building,” Schneider said. “Obviously, the more we can preserve, the better. That’s always our philosophy.”
The property includes 56 parking spaces, some of which could be transformed into an outdoor seating area behind the building if a tenant wants a patio.
Schneider also plans to seek state and federal historic tax credits to help finance the project, which he dubbed Liberty Seneca in recognition of the original owner.
Company representatives are seeking a tenant and have had some “preliminary conversations,” said Schneider Vice President of Development Matt Hartrich. Final development costs and timelines will depend on the tenant.