May
21
2019
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Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal delayed further

Buffalo, N.Y. Hotel Proposal Controversy
Recent Developments
  • “120 year-old documents threaten development on site of Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal” — Wikinews, November 21, 2006
  • “Proposal for Buffalo, N.Y. hotel reportedly dead: parcels for sale “by owner”” — Wikinews, November 16, 2006
  • “Contract to buy properties on site of Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal extended” — Wikinews, October 2, 2006
  • “Court date “as needed” for lawsuit against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal” — Wikinews, August 14, 2006
  • “Preliminary hearing for lawsuit against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal rescheduled” — Wikinews, July 26, 2006
  • “Elmwood Village Hotel proposal in Buffalo, N.Y. withdrawn” — Wikinews, July 13, 2006
  • “Preliminary hearing against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal delayed” — Wikinews, June 2, 2006
Original Story
  • “Hotel development proposal could displace Buffalo, NY business owners” — Wikinews, February 17, 2006

Friday, March 10, 2006

Buffalo, New York —The Common Council of Buffalo voted on Tuesday to send the Elmwood Village Hotel proposal “to committee for further discussion”, after citing the need for more public involvement.

The Elmwood Village Hotel is a development proposal by the Savarino Construction Services Corporation, a project designed by the architect Karl Frizlen of The Frizlen Group. The hotel would be placed on the southeast corner of Elmwood and Forest Avenues in Buffalo.

To make way for the project, at least five buildings located at 1109 to 1121 Elmwood Ave would be demolished. At least two properties on Forest Avenue could also be demolished. The Elmwood properties, according to Eva Hassett, Vice President of Savarion Construction, are “under contract”, but it is unclear if Savarino Construction actually owns the Elmwood properties. Hans Mobius, a former mayorial candidate, is still believed to be the current owner the properties. Mobius also owns 607 Forest Avenue.

The properties 605 and 607 Forest Avenue could also be included in the proposal according to Hassett.

“We would use a Special Development Plan to rezone 1119-1121 Elmwood and 605 Forest to a C-2 zoning category,” stated Hassett. It is possible that Savarino Construction may try to obtain a variance for 605 Forest, which would allow them to enforce eminent domain, should the hotel be allowed to go forward.

The building at 607 Forest was also discussed to be rezoned, but it is unclear what the plans would be for that property. During the February 28 Common Council meeting, Hassett stated that the properties 605 and 607 were “now off the agenda”.

Pano Georgiadis, owner of Pano’s Restaurant at 1081 Elmwood, owns the property at 605 Forest and attended Tuesday’s Common Council meeting.

“Having a hotel is a bright idea. We all love the idea of a hotel, but the way that it is presented, is wishful thinking. This hotel does not fit. It’s like putting two gallons of water in a gallon jug, it does not fit. At the last meeting, the architect admitted that they are planning to put the undergound parking lot and the hotel, right at the property line. If I open my window, I will be able to touch the wall, that goes fifty feet high”, said Georgiadis.

“There is a problem having a seventy-two room hotel and fifty-five parking spaces. That means that all the other cars will spill all over the neighborhood. The footprint is simply too small. If you have a bigger [parking] lot, and a smaller hotel, I will welcome a hotel. I have a parking lot at my own business, and I am chasing people all day long. Remember, the city says it has ‘zero tolerance [for illegal parking]’. Try telling that to the guy from Albany who came to see his kids, that are going to Buffalo State, who would get tickets totaling over a hundred dollars”, added Georgiadis.

The city’s Planning Board is scheduled to meet on March 14, 2006 at 9:00 a.m. about the proposal. Although a discussion will take place, no vote is expected to be taken.

At the moment, none of the properties are zoned for a hotel. Savarino Construction plans on asking for a C2 zoning permit. If that does not work, they plan to implement a new zoning plan called a “special development plan” which would allow for only a hotel on the site. That zone would not be able to be changed.

“This [project] justifies Mobius’s refusal to invest in any maitenance[sic] or improvements”, on the properties said Clarence Carnahan, a local resident. “Where were the Council persons over the years? Where were the city inspectors over the years, to make sure that he maintained and improved his properties? The government was supposed to be protecting, not being preditorial. I see a predatorial issue here when it comes to this hotel. Over the years: Why has the local government been disfunctional when it came to Mobius’s properties? Refusal to invest in improvements, doesn’t that sound like a slumlord? Maybe I am missing a point here, but what kind of messages does this send to other slumlords that havn’t[sic] been jailed or fined? It’s [the hotel] trying to be pushed through.”

Carnahan also presented signs for residents and or business owners who are opposed to the hotel, that could be placed in windows or on stakes in the yard. Some of the signs said, ‘No tell hotel’, ‘Hans off, no hotel’, ‘It takes more than a hotel to make a village’. and ‘Keep Elmwood free, no hotel’. Carnahan plans on making more signs for a protest to be held on Saturday March 18, at 2:00 p.m. (EST) on Elmwood and Forest. Some signs were given to individuals after the meeting.

“First things first, Hans is the problem, and I don’t think it has been addressed. Let’s roll back the clock on this project. What can we do with Hans? There is such thing as eminent domain, which could be of greater interest to the community, to seize the property at its lowest assessed value”, said Nancy Pollina, co-owner of Don Apparel with Patty Morris at 1119 Elmwood. “There are so many ideas that have not been explored and we are about to give this parcel away, to a big developer.”

Mobius has not returned any calls by Wikinews regarding the situation.

A freelance journalist writing for Wikinews has obtained a letter, exclusively, addressed to one of the five business owners from Hans Mobius stating:

There is a proposal to develop my property which you are currently renting. Because of opposition to this development, it does not look like it will happen. I will let you know if there any changes.

Despite the letter, there have been no plans or decisions made to end the proposal.

To date, none of the business owners or residents of 1119-1121 Elmwood have received an eviction notice.

Business owners and residents gave an indication of what they would like to see happen at the corner; a project similar to one done locally last year. There, developers renovated two buildings on Auburn and Elmwood Avenues, merging the buildings into one thus allowing for more shop space. Among some of the shops to move in after the development were Cone Five Pottery, The Ruby Slipper, and Abraham’s Jewelers. Prior to the renovation work, the left building in the picture was boarded up for several years. Many of the concerned locals would like to see a similar development on Forest and Elmwood.

Rocco Termini, a developer in Buffalo, proposed a similar design at the February 28 community meeting

In an interview after the February 28 meeting, Termini stated, “I will be willing to take a look at this myself, or I would be more than happy to be partners with Sam, Sam Savarino”, who is President and Chief Executive Officer of Savarino Construction Services Corp.

So far Savarino Construction has no plans to team up with Termini.

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May
19
2019
0

Wikinews tours London Paralympic Village wheelchair repair workshop

Saturday, September 1, 2012

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London, England — Yesterday Wikinews had the opportunity to tour the Ottobrock wheelchair repair workshops at the Paralympic Village in London.

It is one of a network of workshops at every Paralympic venue. They are run by Ottobrock, which has been repairing wheelchairs at the Paralympics since 1988. The workshop opened on August 22 and will remain until September 10.

The Ottobrock employees include people from 20 countries. Between them, they speak 23 languages. They liken themselves to the pit crew of motor sport — except that they have no idea what sort of equipment they will have to work with. The store room contains 15,000 spare parts, with everything from spare carbon fibre running blades to spare tyres — over 2,000 of them. They stock Ottobrock parts and their competitors’ too, as they have no idea what will arrive at the workshop next. Athletes from around the world bring in all manner of equipment.

The prosthetic technicians have to deal with everything from flat tyres to broken spokes to full-scale rebuilds. They have to be expert problem solvers. They frequently collaborate on determining how best to effect a repair. The objective is to get the wheelchair repaired and back in service as soon as possible.

Wheelchairs vary somewhat in design, depending on the sport. Those for wheelchair basketball and rugby have cambered wheels so they can spin around. Aluminum and titanium parts are used for strength. Ottobrock has a welding workshop where frames are repaired; the teams’ equipment managers understandably cannot bring such heavy equipment with them to the games, so they rely on the workshops. When a repair job is required, it is often required in a hurry. At the Turkey vs United States game, a chair was repaired during the match.

In addition to wheelchairs, the workshops handle all manner of work with prostheses. Carbon fibre running blades are adjusted. Broken feet and legs are a challenge. The Chinese Boccia team brought in its power chairs to have the electronics adjusted. In that sport, having the controls working perfectly is all-important.

There are 4,200 athletes at the Paralympic games. So far, the workshops have carried out 1,100 repairs.

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May
19
2019
0

How To Improve Your Experience Working With Roofers, Request Services Near Wilmette Il

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Getting a roof done for a residential or commercial building can seem like a mammoth task and rightly so. There is a lot of planning involved. Time and money are needed, and you may have deadlines you need to be kept. Working with roofers can be a good experience if you follow a few handy tips. Here are some good ways you can improve the experience you have with contractors near Wilmette Il.

Start Out Right

The most important thing you can do, as far as it is in your power, is to select the right contractors in the first place. They should have a great reputation and track record. They should be experienced and highly knowledgeable. They should also be easy to work with and highly responsive. If you get these things right, the chances are that fewer problems can arise in the course of the work.

Be Clear About Expectations

There must be clarity about expectations from the beginning. This particularly matters where deadlines and costs are concerned. You need to have a good estimation of price breakdown before you agree to anything. As with any construction project, additional costs may creep in, but these should not be so high. Your contractor should give you clear deadlines about the start and expected end date of the work so that you can plan and budget appropriately.

Communicate Often

One of the ways projects go wrong is when there is little to no communication. There has to be an open channel of communication during the installation. Any delays and unexpected circumstances such as an increase in pricing of the materials should be talked about when it occurs. This can keep everyone on the same page despite any challenges that arise.

For highly professional and experienced roofers, contact Showalter Roofing Services, Inc. near Wilmette Il. Visit them online at http://www.showalterroofing.com/. Follow us on google+.

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May
19
2019
0

John Constable painting location mystery solved after 195 years

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The mystery of the location of a viewpoint used by English painter John Constable has been solved, after nearly 200 years. The Stour Valley and Dedham Church was painted in Suffolk, England, between 1814 and 1815, but changes to the landscape meant that the spot he chose was not known, despite the best efforts of historians and art experts.

Now the puzzle has been answered. Martin Atkinson, who works for the National Trust as property manager for East Suffolk, used clues from the painting and looked at old maps to track down the viewpoint. Trees had grown, a hedgerow had been planted and boundaries had moved or disappeared, but Atkinson eventually worked out where Constable had stood. He said, “When I discovered that I had worked out the location where Constable painted this particular masterpiece, I couldn’t believe it. All the pieces of the jigsaw finally fitted together.”

Atkinson used an 1817 map of East Bergholt, where Constable grew up, as a reference point, but found that the view would have changed not long after the painting was completed. “The foreground didn’t fit at all, it was quite unusual as we know Constable painted it in the open air so he would have been standing in the scene. The hedgerow in his work no longer exists and there’s another hedgerow that runs across the scene today which wasn’t there. When you stand on the road on which he would have stood, and use the oak tree as a reference point, you see the same view. It’s great to see where an old master stood – and be inspired by the same view,” he said.

Suffolk, where Constable painted many of his finest paintings, is often called “Constable country”. Most, but not all, of the locations that Constable depicted are known. The picture is now housed in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts.

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May
17
2019
0

Turkish protesters march against Internet censorship

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

About 2,000 protestors marched against Internet censorship last Saturday in Istanbul in Turkey, Xinhua reported.

Protesters gathered at central Istanbul’s Taksim Square and marched down to Istiklal Avenue, chanting slogans against Transport and Communications Minister Binali Y?ld?r?m, Internet censorship, and especially against “Law No 5651”.

Many Internet groups, nongovernmental organizations, and Internet platforms participated in the protest, Hürriyet Daily News reported. Ek?i Sözlük, zaytung.com, bobiler.org, the Young Civilians, Penguen magazine, “Sansüre Sansür” (Censor Censorship) and “Sansüre Kar?? Ortak Platform” (Joint Platform against Censorship) were among the participants.

More than 5,000 Internet sites including Last.fm, YouTube and some of Google services are currently banned in Turkey. The bans are issued by prosecutors if the site “is deemed liable to incite suicide, paedophilia, drug abuse, obscenity or prostitution, or violate a law forbidding any attacks on Atatürk.”

Reporters Without Borders reported that the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) recently wrote to the Turkish authorities to urge them once again to restore access to banned Internet sites.

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May
16
2019
0

Facebook hired PR firm to discredit Google, reveals leaked correspondence

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Facebook hired a public relations firm to systematically discredit Google by paying two journalists to plant negative pieces in U.S. newspapers, leaked correspondence discloses. The new revelations are likely to increase tension between the two companies, which are already fierce rivals.

The social network has confirmed the validity of the leaked emails, seen by Wikinews, which suggest executives at the social networking giant hired Burson-Marsteller, a high profile PR and communications firm, to discredit Social Circle, a rival website run by Google. Burson-Marsteller then recruited two journalists — Jim Goldman and John Mercurio — to push editors at The Washington Post and USA Today to publish editorials criticising Social Circle over its privacy settings. The story was exposed after Burson-Marsteller approached a blogger to publish the propaganda, but the blogger posted the correspondence online.

Burson-Marsteller has been forced to apologize for taking on Facebook as a client, admitting the orders to discredit Google violated company policy. “The assignment on those terms should have been declined,” a spokesperson said. The revelations are likely to be incredibly damaging for the firm, who have represented a number of controversial clients in the past. Facebook, however, said the allegations against Google were valid, insisting there were genuine privacy concerns with Social Circle. Google has declined to comment on the issue.

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May
16
2019
0

News briefs:June 8, 2010

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May
16
2019
0

Turkish government proposes to outlaw LGBT websites

Saturday, February 3, 2007

A proposal by the Turkish government to the Grand National Assembly of Turkey is threatening online gay rights in Turkey. If the proposal is accepted, Turkish websites through which the Turkish LGBT community socializes will be closed and prohibited. According to the press release by Lambda Istanbul, a Turkish LGBT organization, the words “Lesbian“, “Gay“, “Bisexual“, “Transgender” (LGBT) and “Transsexual” are already banned from Turkish internet cafes.

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May
16
2019
0

President of China lunches with Brazilian President

Saturday, November 13, 2004

Hu Jintao, the President of the People’s Republic of China had lunch today with the President of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, at the Granja do Torto, the President’s country residence in the Brazilian Federal District. Lunch was a traditional Brazilian barbecue with different kinds of meat.

Some Brazilian ministers were present at the event: Antonio Palocci (Economy), Eduardo Campos (Science and Technology), Roberto Rodrigues (Agriculture), Luiz Fernando Furlan (Development), Celso Amorim (Exterior Relations), Dilma Rousseff (Mines and Energy). Also present were Roger Agnelli (Vale do Rio Doce company president) and Eduardo Dutra (Petrobras, government oil company, president).

This meeting is part of a new political economy agreement between Brazil and China where Brazil has recognized mainland China’s market economy status, and China has promised to buy more Brazilian products.

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May
16
2019
0

United Nations suspends operations in Gaza after schools and trucks are hit by Israeli forces

Friday, January 9, 2009

The United Nations (UN) suspended all of its operations in Gaza from yesterday, after the bombing of a convoy of UN aid trucks which killed one Palestinian driver, and wounded three others. Thursday was the second day of attacks on UN targets after three UN schools housing refugees were bombed on Tuesday, killing over 50 civilians.

“UNRWA decided to suspend all its operations in the Gaza Strip because of the increasing hostile actions against its premises and personnel,” Adnan Abu Hasna, a Gaza-based spokesman for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), said yesterday. Richard Miron, spokesman for the UN said that the Israeli military had been notified in advance of the coordinates of the relief trucks saying, “This underlines the fundamental insecurity inside Gaza at a time when we are trying to address the dire humanitarian needs of the population there.”

The bombing of the UN trucks was the last straw for the UN, already angered after Israeli tanks fired on a UN school housing refugees killing 50 including an entire family of seven young children. The UN said that they had given Israel the GPS coordinates of their schools, and demanded accountability for the attacks. Israel’s government says it is investigating the incidents.

More schools were attacked including the al-Fakhora School killing 40 people, many of them women and children. Hours before the attack on the al-Fakhora School was an attack on Asma Elementary School which killed three Palestinian cousins. The cousin’s father said the bodies were so mangled he couldn’t tell the bodies apart, “We came to the school when the Israelis warned us to leave,” he said. “We hoped it would be safe. We were 20 in one room. We had no electricity, no blankets, no food. “Suddenly we heard a bomb that shook the school. Windows smashed. Children started to scream. A relative came and told me one of my sons was killed. I found my son’s body with his two cousins. They were cut into pieces by the shell.” Like al-Fakhora, Asma Elementary is an UNRWA school.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on yesterday that they were trying for four days to get their ambulances to a Gaza neighborhood before being allowed to by Israeli military forces. After getting there, they said, they found four starving children sitting next to the bodies of their dead mothers.

“This is a shocking incident,” said Pierre Wettach, ICRC chief for Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories. “The Israeli military must have been aware of the situation but did not assist the wounded. Neither did they make it possible for us or the Palestinian Red Crescent to assist the wounded.”

Israel granted a three-hour ceasefire yesterday that they gave for aid workers to enter areas that they had closed off. 50 bodies were recovered during the ceasefire, raising the death toll to 763, including more than 200 children, since air raids first began on December 27. 3,121 people have also been wounded. Eight Israeli soldiers and three civilians have died in the same period. Israeli forces also shot a Palestinian man in the West Bank during a protest against Israel’s actions in Gaza. Yesterday, a Palestinian man was killed by Israeli forces after a confrontation in the West Bank Jewish settlement of Ma’ale Adumim near Jerusalem.

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