Radio Niagara project gets county planning board approval

Jan. 27—The $7.2 million Radio Niagara project is now going through the permitting process and has received its first approval.

The Niagara County Planning Board recommended site plan approval for the TM Montante development at 500-518 3rd Street and 503 Main Street. It will now go before the Niagara Falls Planning Board for further approval.

Byron DeLuke, director of development for TM Montante, said they are still working on the development and pre-construction process with the state and federal government to get the property eligible for historic tax credits.

Depending on how quickly they get through the permitting and design process, the targeted start of construction is the early summer, with the whole process taking 12 months.

"Development takes time, that's really all it is," DeLuke said.

First unveiled in March, TM Montante has been working with Rochester-based Radio Social, and owner Dan Morgenstern on creating the new location. The two-building space will have a bowling alley, restaurants, bars, an outdoor patio and a six-room boutique hotel.

The 500 3rd St. building was previously the regional Niagara Mohawk headquarters and 512 3rd St. has been home to live music venues. Since Montante was chosen by Empire State Development to redevelop the site, it had looked at turning it into a conference/event space and a brewery.

It was given $942,609 in Cataract Tourist Fund benefits and $601,661 in Niagara County Industrial Development Agency tax incentives.