BUFFALO, N.Y. – The University at Buffalo and First
Niagara Financial Group Inc. announced today that First Niagara has
given to UB a parcel of land to be used in the construction of the
university’s new School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.
The parcel is one of three properties UB is acquiring in
downtown Buffalo for its new medical school. The .85-acre parcel,
appraised at approximately $2 million, is at 973 Main St., where a
First Niagara retail bank branch is currently located.
Under the terms of the donation, UB purchased the parcel for $1
A video of today's announcement is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7OTqnhP3I4.
“The magnitude of First Niagara’s generosity far
surpasses the physical boundaries of the land that is changing
hands,” said UB President Satish K. Tripathi.
“With this acquisition, UB can move ahead with its plans for
the new medical school, which will help to dramatically improve
health care and medical education in our region while providing a
significant boost to the local economy.”
“When we were made aware of how important the land was to
the university, we jumped at the chance to help,” said Gary
Crosby, First Niagara's interim president and chief executive
officer. “We are committed to doing great things in our
community and we are proud to collaborate with UB in order to
provide the final piece of the puzzle for the new medical school to
move forward. Western New York is a globally recognized leader in
life sciences, innovation and research, and we are thrilled to help
make the medical school a reality, as it will positively
impact our area for many generations to come.”
With the First Niagara parcel completing land acquisition for
the site, UB will take the next steps in the medical school
project. A design for the 520,000 gross-square-foot building at the
southeast corner of Main and High streets is being prepared by HOK,
one of the world’s leading architectural firms, in
consultation with UB and community stakeholders. A groundbreaking
for the new building is set for September, and construction is
expected to be completed in 2016.
First Niagara will turn over the site of its branch at 973 Main
St. Oct. 1. The company is committed to the neighborhood and
will open a new permanent branch on the Buffalo Niagara Medical
Campus. In the meantime, a temporary branch will be located
at 1031 Main Street. First Niagara is communicating with
customers on the details of the changes.
The $375 million new medical school is being funded by a variety
of sources, including University and SUNY resources, a university
fundraising campaign and a $35 million challenge grant provided
through the NYSUNY 2020 bill signed into law by Gov. Andrew M.
“By moving UB’s medical school to larger,
world-class teaching and research facilities, UB will attract the
most promising medical students and world-class faculty,”
said Michael E. Cain, MD, UB vice president for health sciences and
dean of the medical school. “The prospect of a brand new, 21
century medical school next to teaching hospitals and
state-of-the-art research laboratories in downtown Buffalo is
helping UB to recruit top physicians and scientists, some of whom
are already here.
“The new medical school will allow us to boost the class
size of first-year medical students to 180 from 140, so we can
graduate more physicians, many of whom will stay and practice in
Western New York,” Cain added. “It allows the
medical school and its faculty to pursue cutting-edge research with
cross-disciplinary synergies that are critical to medical advances
The medical school move and expansion will improve health care
in Western New York. UB will add several new clinical service areas
within the new medical school, providing specialty care and health
services not currently offered in the region.
“This will significantly improve health care for all
Western New Yorkers and will make Buffalo a health care
destination, attracting patients from outside our region who seek
the very best in specialized medical care,” Cain said.
For UB medical students, relocating the medical school to the
downtown medical campus adjacent to John R. Oishei Children’s
Hospital, Buffalo General Medical Center, Gates Vascular Institute,
Roswell Park Cancer Institute and the UB Clinical and Translational
Research Center and other research labs offers a full-immersion
medical education experience.
The relocation and expansion of the medical school also will
significantly benefit the downtown and regional economies because
health care is a major growth sector in the U.S. Recent state
and national studies found that one out of every 11 jobs in New
York State is supported by the medical schools and their teaching
hospitals. Nationally, the number is one in 46.
The relocation of the UB medical school to the Buffalo Niagara
Medical Campus will bring thousands more people downtown every day,
creating economic growth from spin-off biotech companies and new
opportunities for businesses and community members in surrounding
In 2002, there were 7,000 employees on the Buffalo Niagara
Medical Campus; at the end of 2012, there were approximately 12,000
employees. By 2017, there are projected to be 17,000
employees working within institutions and organizations on the