For Bill Paladino it seemed a natural fit to follow in his fathers footsteps. His father Carl Paladino, lifelong Buffalo resident and champion started his development company in 1973. Young Bill started working for his dad when he was 16, doing construction and maintenance. But the world he was exposed to, was much more than repair and upkeep. “I was grew up around the culture and business of development. I didn’t know anything else growing up, but I always liked it.” Bill tells me. He went to St. Bonaventure majoring in finance. Upon graduation he went back to work in the family business, this time concentrating on commercial development, and construction management. Now 40 years old he has moved into the position of CEO of Ellicott Development. He is responsible for the acquisition, planning, coordination, and development of new office, retail and hospitality properties. The company has built or manages numerous office, retail, and living projects throughout the greater Buffalo area. Under his leadership the company is expanding by looking at projects in Pennsylvania and as far away as Florida. “We’re getting into bigger projects,” he tells me over the phone. As far as free time goes, he like to spend time with his son. Together they travel, bike, ski and play sports. He confesses that he doesn’t get down to ski much in Ellicottville, getting most of his runs in at the Buffalo Ski Club.
One such project was the Wingate hotel in town. He says that he found the Village authorities pleasant to work with. “It was a very nice collaboration between us and the Village Planning Board.” The result was a hotel that is very much an asset to the village. The project currently in the works is the re-location of the Kwik Fill market in town. Although the project is identified as a re-location they are not taking the Kabob Kafe approach and physically moving the building. Instead a new market and gas station will be built on the empty lot across from Tops. The new market will be twice the size of the old one, and there will be twice as many gas pumps. The old brick building on the side will be refurbished for new retail spaces, and the project will have one area that could be used as a restaurant. At the moment he doesn’t have any commitments for the restaurant or the retail space, but does admit they are talking to local tenets and some national dining chains. The old Kwik Fill market will remain the the hands of its current owner. When the project is done it is sure to be a great improvement over the current empty lot. As Bill says, “It’s nice to take something that has been underdeveloped for many years, and transform it into something the community can be proud of.” Dad would be proud.