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Key Bank President to Head Downtown Housing Entity

By Mark Scott

Buffalo, NY – Mayor Anthony Masiello has named Key Bank Regional President Marsha Henderson to head up a new downtown housing entity.

The development of downtown housing is one of the nine initiatives part of Buffalo Niagara NOW, a business-led strategy designed to improve the region's competitiveness. In addition to Henderson's appointment, other private sectors leaders will be appointed to the housing entity's board.

Once foundation funding is lined up, Buffalo Niagara Partnership president Andrew Rudnick says a staff will be hired.

"This new entity will assist housing developers to package their needs in relationship to the services provided by City Hall," Rudnick explained. "We want to make sure any new development is not isolated, but is part of the core neighborhood developments in the different parts of downtown."

But Rudnick did say he's disappointed by what he describes as the "intransigence" of some government officials and others who are blocking the various NOW initiatives.

As an example, Rudnick expressed frustation that area political leaders are reluctant to combine the area's economic development agencies into a single, business-friendly entity.