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Governor Hochul Announces Groundbreaking for Colored Musicians Club Expansion Project

New York State Investments in the African American Heritage Corridor Will Continue To Reinvigorate East Buffalo

Complements Governor's Historic $50 Million Targeted Investments in East Buffalo

Renderings Available Here

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that the Colored Musicians Club has begun an expansion and renovations that will allow for increased tourism and visitation to Buffalo's African American Heritage Corridor. Founded in 1918, the CMC is the only remaining African American musicians' club of its kind in the U.S. It has hosted performances by such notable artists as Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, Nat "King" Cole, Miles Davis and Cab Calloway.

"This groundbreaking marks the start of a new chapter at the Colored Musicians Club and represents our deep, ongoing commitment to uplifting the East Buffalo community," Governor Hochul said. "By fostering the expansion and preservation of historic assets along the Michigan Street Corridor, we are celebrating the rich histories of Black New Yorkers and honoring their important contributions in Buffalo, our state, and our nation."

"This is not just an investment in East Buffalo, but an investment in the Black people and the Black culture that runs so deep in this part of Buffalo," said Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado. "The renovation and expansion of the Colored Musicians Club, in addition to other previously announced investments being made in East Buffalo, will increase tourism along Buffalo's historic Michigan Street Corridor, which is rich in African American culture and history."

CMC's $2.95 million expansion is the latest example of the Governor's increased efforts to attract visitors to Buffalo's East Side. The not-for-profit club will make critical improvements through the help of a $2 million a grant from Empire State Development's (ESD) $65 million East Side Corridor Economic Development Fund. These upgrades will spark increased tourism and visitation to Buffalo's historic Michigan Street African American Corridor. DASNY also provided $350,000 in funding for the project.

The CMC project includes the design and construction of a new building entrance at 145 Broadway Street that will be ADA-compliant and include increased storage space for the CMC; restoration of the building's façade and renovations and expansion of the historic performance space; updated fire safety and code issues; and the completion of related site work and repaving and streetscape improvements.

Empire State Development Commissioner and President & CEO Hope Knight said, "Buffalo is rapidly emerging as a top tourism destination. While some locations like the waterfront are booming, we also need to propel the Buffalo's African American community upward by capitalizing on its significant historic assets and incredible potential for growth. Renovations to the African American Heritage Corridor's anchor institutions will help draw new visitors to this emerging neighborhood to celebrate its history, music and cultural diversity. I applaud Governor Hochul for her continued efforts to do more to assist East Buffalo, which has lagged behind the rest of the City during Buffalo's revitalization."

Read the full press release here.