Niagara Falls Reporter
Home | Archive / Search
NOV 18- NOV 26, 2014

Hamister May Finally Be Ready To Deliver on Falls Hotel

By Tony Farina

November 18, 2014

Above: The most recent artist rendering of the proposed $35 million Hamister Hotel. Below: The original rendering of the proposed $25 million Hamister Hotel.


It now looks like Buffalo developer Mark Hamister has finally gotten his act together to break ground in the spring on a Hyatt Place five-story hotel in downtown Niagara Falls topped by a banquet and meeting room on the sixth floor totaling 14,500 square feet.

Councilmember Andrew Touma said the city’s Planning Board will likely approve the often controversial and frequently remade hotel project at its meeting tonight (Nov. 18), with the City Council likely voting its support early next month.

In perhaps its final redesign, the Hamister Hyatt Place will cost $34.9 million, up $12.5 million from the original projected cost, even though 24 residential apartments in the original proposal have been dropped in favor more hotel rooms. The new Hyatt design calls for 125 hotel rooms compared to the 100 rooms in the initial plans. There will also be between 8,000 and 8,100 square feet of retail space included.

In a rare public appearance on the project, Hamister told reporters last week in his Buffalo offices that the apartments were dropped in favor of more rooms because the demand for hotel rooms has increased since the project was originally conceived.

“The good news is that while the project at 360 Rainbow Blvd. has increased in cost, it won’t cost city taxpayers any more money,” said Touma. “The state is increasing its commitment by $1.1 million to a total of $3.85 million.” Hamister is getting more state dollars to do his hotel on prime land he was pretty much gifted ($100,000) by the city for a project hailed by just about every elected official in the area, including the governor and Mayor Paul Dyster who could not be reached for comment on the latest new design. The added state subsidy is a clear indication that officials want to make sure it gets built so they won’t be embarrassed any more by continuing delays.

Likely, good or not, the new design and talk of a spring groundbreaking for the hotel are a relief to Dyster who has had to endure delay and after delay on a project that he touted as the one that will save downtown.

Hamister said he believes Niagara Falls is “only a few years behind” Buffalo in the area of economic activity and Dyster eagerly joined in, saying, according to press reports, “we’re continuing the momentum. This is the way it’s supposed to work.” Despite the delays and political controversy that has marked the Hamister project, Dyster added “it seems like something always goes wrong when you talk about downtown development, but I think the [Hamister project] will leverage more activity.”

It may have been months in the making, and the costs seem a mile high for a five-story hotel with a banquet room on top, but at this point the mayor will probably be satisfied with something from Hamister after all the hype that went into it. Dyster faces a re-election bid next year, and most certainly he wants shovels in the ground by spring to showcase come election time. With a budget deficit and uncertain upkeep costs on his new train station, the mayor is looking for every bit of positive news he can find.





Police Work in the 'Most Dangerous' City
Pescrillo’s Chilton Ave. Warehouse For Sex Offenders Now Strictly a Money Maker
Will New Train Station Bring Same Old Results?
Hamister May Finally Be Ready To Deliver on Falls Hotel
Is a City-Owned Animal Shelter a Wise Choice? Will Likely Cost Far More Than SPCA Services
Reporter Calls on State Park to Restore Public Access to All of Three Sisters Islands
Dyster’s Budget Actually Increases Deficit Council Should Call for Expert Help
City Budget: Facts Shows Spending is the Problem
Mission Opens Thanksgiving Dinner Hotline For Needy
As ISIS Spills Blood, U. S. Political Warfare Continues
American Education Week, Celebrated, Appreciated in Niagara Falls
Need Help Getting the Right Health Insurance? Memorial Will Help People Meet Health Insurance ‘Navigators’
This Week in Stupid Crime
Letters to the Editor
Niagara Catholic Needs Host Families for Three Students in January
Girl Scouts to Host Information Sessions in December Parents and girls can learn about Girl Scouts and how to join
“Christmas Memories” Show Coming to N. Tonawanda
Niagara's Choice FCU supports Child Advocacy Center of Niagara
Red Cross Needs Holiday Donors
'I Doubled my Business Through the Reporter' Lou Avino Isn’t all About Gutters 40-year Falls Legend Keeping On
Audubon Society Hosts Free Tour ‘Gulls of the Niagara River Gorge’ At Artpark Saturday Morning
A-Hunting We Will Go, Regular Firearms Hunting Season for Deer and Bear has Begun

Contact Info

©2014 The Niagara Falls Reporter Inc.
POB 3083, Niagara Falls, N.Y. 14304
Phone: (716) 284-5595

Publisher and Editor in Chief: Frank Parlato
Managing Editor: Dr. Chitra Selvaraj
Senior Editor: Tony Farina