TOWN OF NIAGARA – The Town Board took no action Monday on the expansion of the Fashion Outlets of Niagara, but officials did meet earlier in the day to discuss issues with the site plan.
The board held a brief meeting at 4 p.m. to pay the monthly bills, which it had failed to do at last Tuesday’s regular meeting, which lasted more than three hours.
However, Supervisor Steve Richards confirmed that before Monday’s meeting, he met with State Sen. George Maziarz, R-Newfane; representatives from the state Department of Transportation; Macerich Co., the Santa Monica, Calif., company that owns the mall; and Stantec, the owner’s engineers.
Richards said the purpose of that session was to make sure all parties were on the same page.
The $71 million expansion is planned to include 50 new stores in an additional 170,000 square feet, along with 1,150 more parking spots.
Although the plans have been discussed for months, the board has yet to approve the site plan as part of the state environmental quality review process. As lead agent in the process, the board has the responsibility to address all issues, including traffic, drainage, infrastructure, and building and fire codes.
During one of the last meetings on the mall expansion, board members voiced concerns that the increased emphasis on the Factory Outlet Boulevard side of the mall would create traffic problems. More information on the traffic studies, which predicted no significant traffic increase, was requested.
Richards said Monday that the intention is not to make Factory Outlet Boulevard the main entrance but only to divert traffic there from Military Road.
Richards said he expected all of the additional information to be put in front of the board in September so the plan could be approved.
He noted that he was pleased the DOT seemed eager to move the project along.