Buffalo, New York, will get a mixed-use building – office, hotel and retail complex – designed by Diamond Schmitt

Diamond Schmitt Architects is designing a 12-storey, mixed-use building to rise in downtown Buffalo, New York. The $80-million complex for Uniland Development Company will feature more than 200,000-square-feet of Class-A office space, a 120-room hotel, hospitality and retail services.

This innovative building will anchor a prime intersection bordering the Historic West Village District and serve as an urban beacon at the crossroads of an expanding entertainment corridor. Says Donald Schmitt, principal, Diamond Schmitt, “Buffalo has an extraordinary architectural presence and this project is able to reference the past while providing a new landmark to energize the city.” 

Historic elements and contemporary design blend to create a facade with a unique curvilinear form that rounds the intersection of Delaware and Chippewa streets. The main entrance is located at the centre of the curved facade, a feature given emphasis and visual importance by recessing levels two through five. A four-storey atrium will include a biofilter living wall, a sustainable design feature pioneered by Diamond Schmitt and NEDLAW Living Walls. A grade-level courtyard and rooftop terrace provide additional landscaping.

A local manufacturer will replicate the ornate terra-cotta facade of the former century-old, two-storey structure on this site, using existing molds. This historic facade will become the face of the new energy-efficient, state-of-the-art building.

Taking inspiration from the existing heritage characteristics in the vicinity, the new building facades above the second floor will incorporate modern terra-cotta cladding to create a visual bridge between the historic buildings and contemporary urban fabric. The hotel portion of the building is planned for levels two through five. The office section of the building will comprise levels six through 12.

“This will be a green building with a low carbon footprint,” says Schmitt. Solar-shading devices will minimize heat gain and glare. High-efficiency mechanical and electrical systems will conserve energy. The building is targeting USGBC LEED certification for building core and shell. Completion is scheduled for summer 2015.


Diamond Schmitt Architects is a leading full-service architectural firm based in Toronto with an international reputation for design excellence and sustainable design solutions. An extensive portfolio includes academic buildings, libraries, performing arts centres, sports facilities, master plans, residential and commercial buildings. Equally extensive is work completed for the healthcare sector, with life science facilities, research laboratories and hospitals.

For more info, visit www.dsai.ca