Buffalo Niagara Convention Center Study - Public Comment Summary

Modified: March 13, 2019 1:14pm

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SUMMARY:

On September 20, 2018, County Executive Mark Poloncarz released the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center Market and Feasibility Analysis and, concurrently, opened a 90-day public comment period to obtain feedback on the study.

The request for public comment invited written responses to the following question: Based on the results of the study, should we invest in a strategic long-term plan that would help to create a state-of-the-art convention center for Buffalo and Erie County?  

The following tables summarize the 668 distinct responses received during the public comment period:

 Table 1: Respondent Identification

I am providing comments:

Count

Percentage

As an Erie County resident

436

66%

From the hospitality industry

88

13%

As a convention center customer/user

88

13%

From local industry

34

5%

Other

22

3%

TOTAL

668

100%

 

Table 2: Place of Residence or Business

ZIP Code:

Count

Percentage

City of Buffalo

444

66%

Erie County (outside City of Buffalo)

199

30%

Outside Erie County/State/Country

22

3%

Unknown

3

1%

TOTAL

668

100%

 

Table 3: Relevance of Responses

Comments:

Count

Percentage

Addresses the question of investment

608

91%

Addresses miscellaneous other topics

60

9%

TOTAL

668

100%

 

Table 4: Favorability of Investment

Comments:

Count

Percentage

“For” investment

525

86%

“Against” investment

83

14%

TOTAL

608

100%

 

Table 5: Site Preference of those “For” Investment

Comments:

Count

Percentage

No site preference/other site

334

64%

Favors HSBC Lot Site

130

25%

Favors Expanded BNCC Site

61

11%

TOTAL

525

100%

 

NOTABLE QUOTES/COMMENTS:

“Doing nothing is not an option. Doing nothing effectively cuts us off from the rest of the nation as an up and coming destination. With so much to offer and all the great press that this great city is receiving we need to match this with a new facility. Our continued growth depends on this.”

 

“This area has become an attraction. It is being recognized by publications and visitors from around the world. It is time to take advantage of this new notoriety as a place to visit, see things, do things, enjoy great food, and stay for more than one day. A new convention center will build on that and increase the growing number of travel and tourism jobs that are in the Buffalo-Erie County-Niagara County region.”

 

“It is a no brainer to me to build a state of the art facility downtown. Buffalo’s resurgence has been phenomenal and this is a logical next step. It will be a boost to the local economy in the long run by adding a facility that allows us to host not only more events, but bigger ones. It is worth finding the money to do so as the long term benefits are great with a new facility.”

 

“I think it is imperative that a new convention center be considered as soon as possible. It is actually a “no brainer” considering all the progress the city has made over the past 10 years. Our current convention center is old, dreary and outdated. It does not “fit” the “new” Buffalo!...”

 

“...I have attended a number of trade shows across the county in both major and small cities, and our current center pales in comparison to other sites - in both functionality and attractiveness. Now is the time to do this, and I fully support a new convention center.”

 

“...We are investing in the startup community and companies through 43N, the Innovation Center, etc.; we’re investing in the tech and medical fields with public and private support for the Medical Campus; large companies are starting to call this place home through the efforts of Invest Buffalo Niagara; and we’re building additional infrastructure with new and improved hotels throughout the region. Why would we let a major piece of the puzzle - the tourism and convention industry - fall by the wayside?...”

 

“...Buffalo has recently gotten a lot of international attention as to why it should be a place for tourists to visit due to its rebirth and revitalization. For once - people are talking about our City for something other than the snow! We need to make sure we have the means necessary to keep this momentum going!”

 

“The fact that the CVB has been able to land as many events as they have with what they’ve had to work with is proof that not only should we be in the tourism and convention business, but it should be one of our region’s key economic development initiatives. It should be appropriately supported with public and private investments. This is a major opportunity to seize. Let’s produce a grand result!”  

 

BUSINESS SUPPORT:

Buffalo Motorama

Buffalo Niagara Convention Center

Buffalo Niagara Dental Meeting

Buffalo Place

Buffalo Zoo

Chippewa Alliance

Grand Hyatt New York

Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame

Leadership Buffalo

Mansion on Delaware Avenue

New York State School Boards Association

Nickel City Con

Northeast Chapter of the American Association of Airport Executives

Roycroft Inn

Snow and Ice Management Association

Vidler’s 5 & 10

Visit Buffalo Niagara

 

The Buffalo Niagara Convention Center Market and Feasibility Analysis is avilable for review here.