• Developer cited for lack of occupancy permit at La Nova Pizza

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Benderson Development, which leases space to La Nova Pizza, was cited in mid-April by the Amherst Building Department for allowing the pizzeria to operate without a certificate of occupancy.

La Nova, is a two-store company in Buffalo, N.Y. The citation affects only its second store, a delivery-carryout site, opened in the next-door town of Amherst last June.

According to The Buffalo News, assistant building commissioner F. Robert Danni said a temporary certificate of occupancy was issued last winter, but it has since expired.

"We have issued on many occasions temporary or conditional certificates of occupancy before site work was completed on a project," Danni said Tuesday. "In this case, we found after (La Nova Pizza) opened that there were more employees working there than was represented at the time the permit was first issued."

As a result, he said, the building space housing the business has insufficient toilet facilities to meet the code.

Asked why the town cited Benderson instead of La Nova, Danni replied: "We don't try to determine who is liable in these cases, and we don't know what written agreement there is between the tenant and owner of the property."

Rex Burgher, vice president of Benderson Development, could not be reached to comment Tuesday.

La Nova representatives weren't immediately available for comment to PizzaMarketplace.

Danni also confirmed that off-street parking at the store has become an issue.

Prior to opening, La Nova's plans indicated that 39 off-street parking spaces would be sufficient to meet the minimum required for the zoning ordinance, Danni said.

"Under the ordinance, La Nova has enough parking space to meet the minimum requirement, but whether or not it is sufficient for the actual usage is another question," Danni said, adding that La Nova has a large staff and a very active business. Both contribute to parking problems on Lafayette Boulevard, a residential side street bordering the store property.

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