A new carousel building is coming to Canalside!!! It looks very cool!
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the start of timber construction on the Buffalo Heritage Carousel project at Canalside. The project consists of a new building near the corner of Prime and Perry streets to house the near century old De Angelis Carousel. The carousel is planned to open in the summer of 2021.
The De Angelis Carousel will be a symbol of Buffalo’s proud history and its bright future.
“We are one step closer to building a magnificent home for the De Angelis Carousel at Canalside,” said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. “This continues the transformation of Buffalo’s waterfront that has drawn praise from visitors and publications from around the world, and the Buffalo Heritage Carousel will be a star attraction. New York State is building back better and smarter for a post-pandemic future, and I look forward to welcoming everyone back when it’s completed and available for residents and visitors to enjoy.”
The heavy timber frame of the carousel building will be a hybrid of traditional timber framing and modern steel connected timber. The 27,250 board feet of wood is fabricated from Douglas Fir. The perimeter wood supports will be exposed on the exterior of the building, as well as exposed on the underside of the roof both inside and outside the building. The roof deck, made of two-by-four tongue and groove Douglas Fir, will also be exposed on both the inside and outside of the building.
ECHDC Chairman Robert Gioia said, “It is exciting to see the one-of-a-kind carousel building beginning to take shape, adding to Governor Cuomo’s overall vision for Buffalo’s vibrant waterfront. Children visiting Canalside will enjoy watching the construction crews working to turn a pile of timber and steel into the next waterfront attraction. The Carousel project is designed to complement the Explore & More Children’s Museum and the Longshed project, which will be completed this fall.”
The vintage menagerie, park-style carousel that will be installed inside the carousel building was manufactured in 1924 by Spillman Engineering in North Tonawanda for Dominick De Angelis. The carousel was in operation until the 1950s at which point it was stored by the De Angelis family until Buffalo Heritage Carousel acquired it in 2016 with the generous support of the Margaret L. Wendt Foundation with a goal of providing family-oriented recreation on Buffalo’s waterfront and to celebrate Western New York’s industrial heritage.
The Buffalo Heritage Carousel artists continue to work on the meticulous restoration of the carousel pieces while raising funds to build, operate, and maintain the carousel. Carousel sponsorships are available including for the Wurlitzer Band Organ and Adopt-A Horse/Animals.
The State awarded a $1.2 million matching grant, funded by New York Power Authority, to begin the $5.8M project; which includes $4M for the roundhouse building, $1M for the carousel, and $800,000 for operations. KeyBank and the First Niagara Foundation matched the State’s grant of $1.2 million.
NYPA chairman and Buffalo Resident John R. Koelmel said, “Once complete, this restored carousel will be a wonderful attraction in the region. NYPA is proud to be a strong leader in redeveloping the waterfront in Buffalo through our significant funding and other support.”
The State has committed more than $90 million to transform Buffalo’s Inner Harbor into what is now known as Canalside, a mixed-use urban entertainment destination that has received national and international attention as one of the key drivers of the remarkable resurgence of Western New York. Open to the public since May 2008, Canalside features several fully restored facets of the original Erie Canal, including the Commercial Slip, Boardwalk and the Historic Replica Canals.
A year-round attraction that traditionally hosts nearly 1.5 million visitors annually, Canalside is working during the pandemic to continue to provide a limited assortment of events, family activities, attractions, historical and cultural programming, art, and food that showcases the diverse resources of the Western New York region. In addition, the Historic Replica Canals are frozen in the winter months to become New York State’s largest outdoor ice-skating rink.
The carousel is set to be up and running by next summer!