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NIAGARA FALLS – Plans by Benderson Development to build up a retail plaza at the northeast corner of Niagara Falls and Factory Outlet boulevards received approval from the city Planning Board on Wednesday night.

The board approved a site plan for construction of two buildings: one 6,000 square feet and the other 9,250 square feet.

Those buildings will be added to a site where an LA Fitness is now being constructed and near a GameStop video game store already along Niagara Falls Boulevard.

The smaller building, which is slated to be constructed first, will have a drive-thru restaurant taking up 1,750 square feet. The rest of the 4,250 square feet is slated to be retail space, said Matt Oates, an engineer for Benderson. How the larger building may be divided has not yet been determined, Oates said. None of the tenants has been finalized, he said.

What the Planning Board approved was actually an amendment to plans that it approved in 2007, said senior planner Thomas J. DeSantis.

Plans changed when Benderson’s site expanded because it acquired an adjacent motel property.

In other business, the board:

• Approved plans for an outdoor patio at Niagara County Community College’s Culinary Arts Institute on Old Falls Street. The board’s approval included permission for the patio to encroach on the city’s right of way. The City Council on Monday granted its approval conditioned upon Planning Board approval.

• Granted permission for the owners of the Duff’s Famous Wings to be located in the Pine Plaza to encroach on the city’s right of way for an outdoor patio. That is contingent upon approval still needed from the board for specific plans for the patio. Some board members and city officials expressed concern about the amount of space available and potential dangers to pedestrians.

• Approved a plan from Ellicott Development for a parking lot at 501 Walnut Ave. The parking lot will aid in obtaining a tenant for a nearby property the company owns at 606 Walnut, said David Hall, a company representative.

email: abesecker@buffnews.com