Western Hemisphere’s* Largest Solar Panel Plant Coming to Buffalo

Elon Musk, known for starting Paypal, SpaceX, and Tesla Motors, is planning on breaking another record, only this time it’s in Buffalo. Musk’s company, SolarCity, has just acquired Silevo, the California company slated to move into the clean tech innovation hub at Riverbend.The $225 million Hub @ Riverbend was announced in November by Governor Cuomo as part of the Buffalo billion.

The $350 million acquisition by SolarCity has prompted the company to announce that they plan to create a solar panel plant five times bigger than the Hub’s planned size resulting in the largest plant of its kind in the world. The acquisition of Silevo will allow SolarCity to produce some of the most efficient panels on the market and prompted an 11% jump in shares.

*Some original claims were calling the plant the world’s largest but was downgraded to Western Hemisphere’s largest later on

Buffalo RiverWorks

A major announcement was made last week for the development of a $40 million mixed-use project along the Buffalo River to be called Buffalo RiverWorks. The $15 million phase I of the project will include restaurants, a brewery, a beer garden, a rooftop bar, recreational boating, a sand beach, a 5,000 capacity year-round venue for concerts and sports, and seasonal outdoor ice rinks for adult amateur hockey. It is already decided to be the location for the 2014 Labatt Blue Pond Hockey Tournament ensuring the event will occur regardless of the weather.

Phase II would include a $25 million 100 room hotel that would be incorporated into the historic silo complex. One developer, Doug Swift, claims, “The whole area is going to change in the next 10 years.” This statement is likely true as $75 million has gone to clean up the Buffalo River; neighboring Silo City continues to grow with repeated successful events; and nearby Ohio Street is getting an $11.3 million conversion to a parkway connecting the burgeoning inner and outer harbors.

White Rock Pigments considers plant in Lackawanna

South Buffalo’s growing manufacturing district is about to have a new business - White Rock Pigments. The Cleveland-based company is looking to open a $50 million plant in Lackawanna within the next two years providing nearly 100 jobs with the potential for more. The plant will produce titanium dioxide which gives a wide variety of products their white color. Existing manufacturing buildings, affordable power, a wide range of transportation options, and a technically skilled work-base all led White Rock Pigments CEO and Buffalo-native Leon Pollot to proclaim, “Buffalo is an excellent location for us.

A Long Lost Box of Kodachrome, Scanned!

A Long Lost Box of Kodachrome, Scanned!

Buffalo, Autumn 1988.

The other day, I was searching for some images for a book project, and I discovered a long lost yellow box of Kodachrome slides.

In the 1980s, normally, I was pretty good about labeling my slides. This book simply read, “Buffalo unlabled”.

I thought, “uh oh, what’s this … ”

Like, pirates treasure!

I’d managed to stamp my name on each slide. And, back in the day, I…

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The Best Thing My City Did This Year

Buffalo was one of 20 cities The Atlantic Cities chose to write about “changes that really mattered” in 2013. For Buffalo, Colin Dabkowski felt that it was the reawakening of the city’s industrial infrastructure. Specifically, Dabkowski focused on a theater production held at Silo City called Motion Picture.

Other signs of revitalization in Buffalo’s old industrial sector include City of Night, Boom Days, Silo City Rocks, the Rigidized River Fest Regatta, Buffalo River Fest Park, and the cleanup of the Buffalo River. In addition, new projects and businesses are further rebuilding the heart of Buffalo’s once deflated industrial core including a massive $5 million illumination project, an $11.3 million Ohio Street makeover, an $18 million apartment complex along the Buffalo River, a $40 million mixed-use project known as Buffalo Riverworks, a $225 million clean energy high-tech manufacturing facility, and the return of hundreds of millions of dollars in industrial business.