City approves Tim Hortons project for corner of Michigan and William
Building will include three apartments
After months of delays, debate, changes – even a near defeat at the hands of the Zoning Board of Appeals – Ellicott Development Co. has won city approval for its planned Tim Hortons Cafe & Bake Shop project in downtown Buffalo.
The developer, owned by Carl and William Paladino, plans to construct a two-story retail and residential building on a vacant site at 474 Michigan Ave., at the corner of William Street.
The 9,431-square-foot project would be anchored by a 2,000-square-foot Tim Hortons Cafe & Bake Shop on the first floor, plus 2,500 square feet of additional retail space and 32 parking spaces. The second floor would feature three apartments with a mix of twoand three-bedroom units.
The $1.115 million plan was nearly derailed last year when the Zoning Board of Appeals rejected a variance to permit a drive-thru, but Ellicott took the agency to court and won a reversal. Then it was held up at the Buffalo Planning Board in January, after neighbors criticized the design as inconsistent with an urban, walkable neighborhood and cited risks to pedestrians.
Ellicott went through multiple attempts at revision since then, incorporating a requested nod to the adjacent Michigan Street African American Heritage Corridor while trying to address the safety concerns without impeding traffic.
The Planning Board acknowledged the developer’s effort and backed an earlier plan with three curb cuts on William for the drivethru and parking lot, but with required right-turns only to keep traffic away from Michigan.