1/31/2007

Radiant Driveway...

I guess I'm fortunate as the wind usually whips most of the snow away from my front door. Further down Woodlawn Avenue a neighbor of mine took things to a higher level when he built his house. Mentioned his radiant heated driveway awhile ago.
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While radiant heat is the rage in Iceland and spots across Europe, it's rarely used here. On Elmwood and Bird, We Never Close installed it and Paul Johnson - Johnson & Sons - at 60 Brantford installed it recently, too.

Anyone want to venture a guess as to why we don't see more of this application. Like to know.

Almost forgot - The City owned Woodlawn Row Houses, and the primary reason why I started blogging are located 100' feet away from this spot...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

1/30/2007

Total Wow!!! - inside 97 Dodge Street

While checking out the exterior of 97 Dodge Street this afternoon, I walked around back. Wide open, so...
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Wrote about this spot yesterday - Biting My Tongue! - Really amazing inside. Just loved the attic space. 95% of the woodwork through out the house is still in place. Appeared as though electric and heating had been updated recently, too.

Here's the flickr slide show - Inside 97 Dodge Street

Had a dinner meet-up with a restoration artist and film maker from the Czech Republic. She was totally amazed with the potential of 97 Dodge Street. When she saw this map and realized that this spot is steps from the subway and around the corner from Artspace...she thought for a moment that Buffalonians have forgotten something important. Her current restoration work connects her to Buffalo's heritage and she's very hopeful that someone will step-up and complete this project. She's ready to help in lending her expertise. Let me know...i'll make the connection.

Wanna take a closer look, join me for a Saturday walking tour of the Artspace Backyard.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

194 East Utica...update...

Just got this from Rod McCallum. Project is moving forward with some significant steps. Current thought is to call it "Queen City Farm." Posted about this last week - 194 East Utica on Life Support. Since then we had an opportunity to present parts of this project to students at UB School of Architecture and Planning and Samina Raja's Planning Methods Lab. Here's Rod's update...
I have decided to send a mass email to update everyone on what is happening with the project at 194 E Utica Street. Everyone on this list has some level of involvement or knowledge of the project and is interested in seeing it go forward. read the rest
Rod, myself and few others will be presenting this idea to City folks at some point next week. Meanwhile if you have any suggestions or would like to bring additional resources to the table to help move this project along, please let me know. Or reach Rod directly at the King Urban Life Center - 891-7912 or via email.
Make sure to check out Chicago based architect and frequent Buffalo Rising contributer David Steele's post from last April - Why is this house doomed.

You'll also notice - here's the map - that 194 East Utica is in the middle of 50m of public investment in the arts and education. Pretty good place to start. More very soon...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Along Michigan Avenue

One of my favorite spots along Michigan Avenue. Here's the map!
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1325 Michigan Avenue is the most unique building - besides St. Vincent's - between Artspace and Performing Arts HS. If you are interested in taking a closer look, we walk past here during the Artspace Backyard walking tour on Saturdays.
Behind the roll-up garage door thing is a very cool entrance into a retail spot. Last year, Chris Hawley identified this location as a former tavern, back in the day in his Midtown: Poised for Renaissance.

An no, last time I checked the City doesn't own this...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

1/29/2007

Thinking Spring, still...

During the course of the past month a few influences have been converging. Vermont trip, garden and just recently this article - Unhappy Meals by Michael Pollan. On top of this, had the opportunity to spend some time with Samina Raja last week. Saw this post card on her office bulletin board at UB's School of Architecture and Planning.
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Samina passed along a copy Food For Growth: A Community Food System Plan for Buffalo's West Side (2003). It's a joint Massachusetts Avenue Project and UB planning collaboration. I've archived the full 164 page report - right here (link to .pdf file). Good material here for what is most likely going to called the Queen City Farm over at 194 East Utica.
Somehow this combination of recent influences and stuff that's been resonating for a long time is merging. Older material weaves its way back to the writing and work of poet/farmer Wendell Berry. One of my favorite Wendell Berry quotations...
It maybe when we no longer know what to do, we have come to our real work. And that when we no longer know which way to go, we have begun our real journey.
Slight detour, I know. fixB readers are going to get something about gardening, probably on a regular basis. Coldest part of the winter, yet spring is less than 60 days away...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Biting my Tongue...

First mentioned this house - 97 Dodge, last summer after I attended my first Coe Place block club meeting. Been drawn to it ever since. Not including what looks to be like a magnificent attic, this single family home has more than 2600 sq ft of living space. The City of Buffalo has owned it since November '05.
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On Saturday, during the Artspace Backyard walking tour, we noticed that 97 Dodge has been marked for demolition. While I fully understand that we can't save every building here in the City, I believe that we have to be strategic with how we approach demolition. 97 Dodge is located one block from Main Street and two blocks from both Artspace and the Summer Street Station. Here's the map. The house appears to sit straight on the foundation and despite the graffiti and a few broken windows the house is in excellent condition. Another view from June 2006.
update 1/30/07...1130am...
Make sure to check out these two spots, too. Both City owned!
115 Northampton Street
93 Riley Street
At a minimum, a very small part of the 12-15K that will be spent demolishing this place could be used to mothball this house. In a few years when the market catches up to this block...presto, way cool house.

Let me know what you think, especially considering its location.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

East meets West...

Had a long sit down with West-side resident and community activist Harvey Garrett last week at the Sonic Café. We toured the neighborhood around Artspace and explored some of the connections to my immediate neighborhood across from the new Performing Arts HS on Woodlawn Avenue. We both agreed that these developments have tremendous potential, in a catalytic way, to help move and revitalize this near East side neighborhood. I look forward and welcome Harvey's participation in a small project in the Artspace Backyard area involving the homesteading and re-settlement of three City owned properties. (Right now, you'll learn more about this on during Saturday Tours at 11am.) First wrote about meeting Harvey, right here.

Frequent readers of fixBuffalo often get two messages from my blogging. I'm aware of this. While simultaneously promoting my neighborhood (see map) - including highlighting the dozens of opportunities that exist between Artspace and Performing Arts - I would be remiss if I didn't call attention to the various issues involving what I've come to understand as deep structural neglect. Think knowing is better than not knowing when it comes to these things. My perspective, or so I would like to think, is marked by a sort of insider-outsiderhood. I have no special training in law, public-policy or planning. I just walk around with my camera and at the end of the day do my best to share what I have seen. If my blogging appears confused, well consider that it may reflect the reality of living on street with a 30m school renovation project and dozens of abandoned, boarded, derelict and vacant houses on the block. Most of these are owned by the very entity re-building the school or people controlling these entities. It is confusing.

And yes, despite the boards, i see extraordinary opportunity and beauty behind them. Task, of course is to find people who desire and are willing to do the same. Sure, I leave Buffalo six times everyday - who doesn't? - I always come back a seventh. Love where I am. Cannot imagine being anywhere else.

Regular Saturday Morning Tours - right here!
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

BAVPA Reconstruction - End Week 30

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January 26, 2007 - Day 215
Finally got inside. Drew Kelly and Chris Byrd made arrangements with Paul McDonnell, BPS Architect and project coordinator. Paul informed us that the project is ahead of schedule and expects to be substantially completed by July 1, 2007. We are way past the half way point. I remember the first construction photo - here - June 25, 2006. Wish I'd been taking roof shots like this all along...
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flickr slideshow - Performing Arts HS/January 2007. Chris Byrd shot this short video!
See BAVPA Re-Construction Archive for details and construction updates.
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1/26/2007

Thinking about Spring...

A few weeks ago, I cobbled together a number of boxes for raised garden beds. Enough lumber that I salvaged from an abandoned City owned house down the street to build another four. Idea here is to plan and plant a little neighborhood garden and give away a few plots to some interested neighbors.

Update...1/29/07...very loyal fixBuffalo supporter tipped me off to this - Unhappy Meal, a lengthy essay by Michael Pollen that appeared in yesterday's New York Times Magazine. Hits several points that i've been interested in for the longest time and now exploring with this garden. One of the his observations...
8. Cook. And if you can, plant a garden. To take part in the intricate and endlessly interesting processes of providing for our sustenance is the surest way to escape the culture of fast food and the values implicit in it: that food should be cheap and easy; that food is fuel and not communion. The culture of the kitchen, as embodied in those enduring traditions we call cuisines, contains more wisdom about diet and health than you are apt to find in any nutrition journal or journalism. Plus, the food you grow yourself contributes to your health long before you sit down to eat it. So you might want to think about putting down this article now and picking up a spatula or hoe.
IMG_3883
Yes the house over on the right, 1466 Michigan Avenue, had a new roof five years ago and is in excellent structural condition sans windows. It's part of my view from my desk looking out my office window. City has owned this house since October 2005. It's wide open, despite my boarding and re-boarding. Porch is crap...yet this house is an excellent double and sits less than a 100 yards away from the 30m renovation of the future home of Performing Arts High School. There are more than a dozen such abandoned, boarded, derelict and vacant places the same distance away from the new school. Worst offender, Rev. Stenhouse's Bethel CDC - Boarding Control. Cool video, right here.

If anyone has some advice on community gardens or would like to help, let me know.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

1/25/2007

Another Church...for sale!

Know you've been getting your fill of church closings. Here's something different.
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snipshot_aewd4m1avdn snipshot_ae1gva2mhroi snipshot_ae1bkxra7khq snipshot_aegl1dw3rgc snipshot_aem93onkrxh
click image to enlarge
Saw this at the corner of Main and Northrup on the way to UB School of Architecture and Planning this morning. Living in a church would be a total trip. I'll call Russell in the morning and see wasup...and maybe grab some interior pics!
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Smart City...Saturday and Sunday!

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Smart City is a weekly, hour-long public radio talk show that takes an in-depth look at urban life, the people, places, ideas and trends shaping cities. Host Carol Coletta talks with national and international public policy experts, elected officials, economists, business leaders, artists, developers, planners and others for a penetrating discussion of urban issues.

This weekend...
  • There was a time not too long ago when colleges and universities thought of themselves as very separate from their host cities. But that's a dying notion and clear evidence of that is Campus Compact, a coalition of more than 1000 colleges and university presidents who promote civic engagement among students and faculty. To tell us about the work of Campus Compact, we have its president, Maureen Curley and Roger Mandle, president of the Rhode Island School of Design.
  • Promoting civic engagement in a very different way is Vicki Been. Vicki's work at the Furman Center for Real Estate and Public Policy is helping New Yorkers unravel the mysteries of real estate development proposed in that city so that they can influence what happens.
Listen to host Carol Colletta - list of additional stations/times - 3pm on Saturday and 7pm Sunday on WNED - 970 in Buffalo, NY. Past Shows are archived and the newsletter is published regularly.
Smart City is underwritten by Buffalo, NY's own Hyde Family Foundation...thanks George!
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Saturday Morning Tours...

Regular 11am Saturday morning tour of the neighborhood - Backyard at Artspace. Meet-up in the Sonic Café area and plan on walking down Coe Place, around Ellicott, Northampton and Holland Place and Dodge if we have time. Plenty to see and learn about in an hour. Come on over and learn about the coolest emerging neighborhood in Buffalo! Here's the map!

Here's what we saw on a recent tour - Saturday Surprise!
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

194 East Utica...On Life Support!

Spent part of the day at UB's School of Architecture and Planning talking with Samina Raja and Rod Mccallum. A few months ago Rod caught one of my posts about 194 East Utica - Saying Goodbye? David Steele, Chicago based architect and frequent Buffalo Rising contributor wrote about 194 East Utica, last April. Deeply moving piece - Why is this House Doomed? with an amazingly haunting sound track on the slideshow. Here's the map! At Rod's request, I asked Preservation Board members recently to stay the demolition of this City owned property. These folks have been very cooperative. Just asked and got a renewal for another 60 day stay of execution.

Rod asked me to pass along this message to fixBuffalo readers...
At 194 East Utica Street in Buffalo, New York stands a grand Victorian home built in 1900. The city planning board sees another vacant lot in the future of 194 but our vision is very different.

We see a vibrant community space that brings the neighborhood together and energizes this vital corridor between east and west. We see a restored parlor providing space for block club meetings, parenting classes, and a homework club. We see some of 21 vacant lots immediately surrounding 194 providing nutritious food and an essential connection with nature for neighborhood children and families. We see a renovated kitchen being used to teach single mothers how to prepare quick and healthy meals for their children. We see seniors from the nearby senior center establishing a presence in the streets while beautifying the neighborhood and getting exercise in the gardens. We see inexpensive housing for community development volunteers and families in transition. We see young men and women learning a trade with hands on participation in a major renovation project. We see a place of hope and transformational development rising from a glorious past, through a challenging present into a bright future.

This vision is not only possible but with your support it is within our grasp. Thank you for your time and consideration.
If you desire to be involved, please contact Rod via email -
rmccallum@kingcentercharterschool.org

Tomorrow afternoon Rod and I are back at UB School of Architecture and Planning. We've been invited to address two of Samina Raja's classes. The goal here is to include UB students in various aspects of the planning and promotion of this project as a living laboratory of sorts - a working and living space. All sorts of discussion about grants and developing a sustainable model for other people to follow.

What's amazing is that 194 East Utica is right in the middle of 50m of public investment - see map - in the arts and education in this part of Buffalo - Artspace, Merriweather Library and the new home of Performing Arts HS. The African American Cultural Center is just around the corner, too!
Fingers crossed. Update tomorrow.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Saturday Morning Tour - Artspace

Regular 11am Saturday morning tour of the neighborhood - Backyard at Artspace. Meet-up in the Sonic Café area and plan on walking down Coe Place, around Ellicott, Northampton and Holland Place and Dodge if we have time. Plenty to see and learn about in an hour. Come on over and learn about the coolest emerging neighborhood in Buffalo! Here's the map!
See the 2007 Tour History!

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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

"Hidden Drives..."

Been working on my writing for sometime, see my faq for more. Had an opportunity recently to meet-up with two friends, Prashant and Monika for a few beers. Both are accomplished artists, film makers and serious fashionistas. Monika is from Prague and Prashant, Bombay. He also does tantra workshops here, in europe and back home. Very cool people.
Monika and Prashant
Plan is to collaborate on a short piece regarding the impact consumerism has on people lives, the choices they make and how it shapes relationships, today. Three characters, two men and a woman. Should be interesting. Drawing from shared experiences, the idea is to tell the same story from multiple perspectives.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

1/24/2007

Big Tree Meeting

Tomorrow morning at the Science Museum a community forum on Buffalo's trees.
photo courtesy of Caroline @ Exposure Buffalo and the 716
The program tomorrow includes...
  • 10:30 Welcome Carroll Simon, Acting President and CEO Buffalo Science Museum
  • 10:45 Overview of Forum Lynda Schneekloth, Urban Design Project, UB President, Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper
  • 10:50 Invited Guests David Nowak, PhD. USDA Forest Service, Northern Forest Experiment Station The Multiple Values of an Urban Forest and Martin Jaffe, Director, Urban Planning and Policy Program, University of Illinois, Chicago Chicago's Experiments and Experience in Urban Forests
  • 11:30 Community Community Leaders will each speak briefly on their response to the storm and their plans for the urban forest with responses by our guests.
    • Jay Burney, BuffaloTrees and Learning Sustainability Campaign
    • David Colligan, Chair, ReForest Buffalo; CoChair Re-Tree WNY
    • Tim Fulton, Director of Operations, Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy
    • Paul Mauer, ReTree WNY
    • Oswaldo Mestre, Director, City of Buffalo Division of Citizen's Services
    • G. William Page, UB Department of Urban and Regional Planning
  • 12:15 Open Questions and Comments from the Floor Discussion
It was like yesterday. Hard to believe this was four months ago! Still think these trees and thinking make for good choices.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Saving St. Ann's...

Dr. Ederer from the History Dept. at Buffalo State College is leading the effort to keep the doors of St. Ann's open. He writes:
Essentially we are a group of parishioners who are investigating working out an arrangement with the diocese to manage and finance repairs and basic operating in the very possible event that St. Ann's loses its status as a parish. St. Ann's is also a shrine, and we are hoping we can keep it afloat in that capacity. That will mean incorporation at some point, but all with approval of the diocese, and that is a discussion that still has to take place.

At this point, the main thing would be to put the call out for anyone interested to contact me. 2008 is the parish's 150th anniversary, and we are pretty certain we will be around at least that long. As we plan events for that, we can use any help anyone can offer.
Here's the link to St. Ann's via Buffalo as Architectural Museum.
You can reach Dr. Ederer here - EDERERMF@BuffaloState.edu if you have resources and/or would like to help in this effort. Earlier this summer Dr. Ederer joined me on a PresCo sponsored bicycle tour. We stopped by St. Ann's. Here's the post. Dr. Ederer's book - Buffalo's Catholic Churches: Ethnic Communities and Architectural Legacy (2003) should be on your coffee table. It's an excellent text, with pics, describing the rise of Buffalo's Catholic parishes.

The school building, adjacent to the church, is mammoth. I see it from roof tops all over the East side. Will have additional photos, soon.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Productivity Tools...Really Cool...

Occasionally I'll post some tech or blogging stuff...so not in a Buffalo mood, right now.
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If you haven't checked out del.icio.us, you should. It's an amazing way to keep track of all your bookmarks. Here mine - del.icio.us/fixBuffalo

With this program - I've been a fan of it for years - you can have your bookmarks anywhere. Way cool ways to share, too. For example, one of my favorite fin-de-siècle writers is Arthur Schnitzler - not only was he shrink to both Freud and Jung he wrote the book that Kubrick turned into a movie. Click and see the bookmarks. Very easy to use, especially with Firefox as you can embed del.icio.us in your tool bar. Click and save, simple.

When you click into my del.icio.us/fixBuffalo you'll see a bunch of tags. It's how bookmarks get organized. Again, favorite French historian, Braudel. You can also see what others are tagging, too. Or create a special tag and share with friends. A favorite time kill is trolling around what's popular. Lot of high end webizens tagging some awesome finds. Really cool. Bottom line, your bookmarks are always available - home, office, cafe or on the road. Some of them you may want to keep private. No problem. When you click on erotica...you can hide the stuff you don't want others to see. Cool.
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Thinkature is equally amazing. All you need is a friend, partner or colleague! It's like email and visualization combined. You can get in synch in seconds! Been using it late night with friends in Europe.
  • Thinkature brings the richness of in-person, visual communication to the web by placing instant messaging inside a visual workspace. Use it as a collaboration environment, a meeting room, a personal web-based whiteboard, or something entirely new.
  • With Thinkature, you can create a collaborative workspace and invite coworkers, friends, and colleagues to join you in just seconds. Once inside your workspace, you can communicate by chatting, drawing, creating cards, and adding content from around the Internet. It's all synchronous, too - no need to hit reload
If you like email, you'll love Thinkature. Sharing stuff for biz or pleasure has never been easier across any browser or network. You will not be disappointed. Really.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

1/23/2007

Double Punched!

A quick one, two this week and it's only Tuesday.
Devastating news for Buffalo's East side and parts of Cheektowaga. Big wake-up call if I've ever seen one. First the announcement from Bishop Kmiec's headquarter's at 79 Oakland Place that 14 schools across the Diocese will be closing this June. I'll get around for pictures, too much snow today.
Here's that story -
Bishop Edward U. Kmiec is expected to announce the closings this morning at a news conference in the Catholic Center. The Catholic Diocese of Buffalo will close 14 elementary schools in June - its most dramatic and controversial effort to staunch enrollment declines and ensure the long-term viability of Catholic education in Western New York. read the rest
BuffaloRising covered part of that story. I remember here, when Turner/Carroll HS was shut down...
Then we hear that vacancy, like a virus is spreading, seemingly out of control, from Buffalo's blighted and bombed out East side to Cheektowaga and parts of Amherst.

Here's that story...
Town officials pulled up to the once-charming farmer's cottage. They barely had time to get out of their car before a neighbor opened her window and called out to them in a hopeful tone: "Are you going to tear it down?" Vacant houses long have been tagged as a city problem. But this scene was in the Town of Cheektowaga. And there are signs that other first-ring suburbs face the beginnings of a problem that has plagued the city for decades. read the rest
And then there's the news from Charlotte, NC that I posted earlier tonite...rather depressing.

January 22 is thought to have been the most depressing day of the year. Find out here. For me, too. Good friend diagnosed with leukemia, another told me he'd accepted a teaching position in Las Vegas and is moving next week.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

What Others Say...

One of the unintended consequences of sustained blogging is readership. Emails pour in daily, mostly asking about Artspace, investment opportunities and various questions about "the old neighborhood" here on the City's East side. Others, like this, slow me down. Always interested in what others are thinking...
As a former Buffalonian, I check in frequently to your site to keep an eye on how things are going back home. As an architect, I appreciate your keeping architecture and the built environment in the forefront of your discussions. Keep up the intelligent discourse.
Anyway, I moved to Charlotte in mid-2004, and thought you might be interested in another outside view of Buffalo. I looked at my Sunday Observer and was surprised to see "Buffalo Stampede" splashed across the front page. I had seen in previous days the paper was going to be publishing their study of the main sources of Charlotte's population influx, and suspected New York State might be mentioned prominently, but never did I imagine this!

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A BUFFALO STAMPEDE

UPSTATE N.Y. LEADS CHARGE TO CHARLOTTE REGION, ANALYSIS FINDS
LEIGH DYER, LDYER@CHARLOTTEOBSERVER.COM, DATABASE EDITOR TED MELLNIK CONTRIBUTED.

On the shores of Lake Erie, the city of Buffalo and other communities have withered. Two-thirds of cities and towns in upstate New York lost population this decade. Several games of the region's beloved Buffalo Bills were blacked out locally this season because of unfilled seats. The local Catholic diocese is closing schools and churches. Since its 1950s high, Buffalo's population has declined by more than half, to around 280,000. Meanwhile, since 2000, Charlotte has added 46,000 residents.

And now, an Observer analysis of new data from the Internal Revenue Service shows a significant chunk of upstate New York's population has moved to the Charlotte region. The information, using address changes on tax returns, paints a picture of the migration into and out of the Charlotte region. It shows that Mecklenburg County is the No. 1 out-of-state destination for people leaving Erie County, home of Buffalo. It's the No. 2 out-of-state destination from Monroe County, home to nearby Rochester. read the rest
Yikes!
Could drive this route blindfolded. Very dear friend, Nancy Braun former Buffalo attorney and restaurant owner, now with Alan Tate, keeps inviting me. Give her a call if you're headed down. She's Charlotte's top residential realtor and knows food better than anyone I know...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

1/22/2007

Niagara Falls...1911...Pix from Mom

This afternoon the following pix showed up in my email. Thanks Mom!


ATT89552326 ATT89552325 ATT89552324
click image to enlarge
Anybody know anything more about these pix. Like to credit the photographer at least.

Coldest part of the winter, so far and just when I was thinking that things were going to be abit warmer for me, I'm reminded by these pix just how cold it used to be. Two duvets now on the big bed this winter...extra blanket on deck...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Artspace - January 2007 - Update

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First posted about Artspace in December 2004 - right here. It's been fascinating to watch the project take flight here in my neighborhood. From the beginning always thought of it as sister project to Performing Arts HS a few blocks away with all sorts of synergy. Have no idea if any sort of collaboration will take place or be encouraged on any level between the school - teachers, Friends of the Arts Academy or students. Tried email for months. Nothing. Reaching out would be a good thing. I remember at a recent Coe Place block club meeting residents and area neighbors learned after the fact that there had been a construction party back in September. Lot of public money riding on this project, last time I checked...
Here a few shots from Saturday...
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IMG_3856 IMG_3854 IMG_3849 IMG_3842 IMG_3753
click image to enlarge

IMG_3844
Still get lots of questions about rental information every day from local and regional artists. I always let people know they should sign up for the email updates. Done that three times myself with different email addresses and still nothing...

Long meeting yesterday with local guy, whose organization has participated in funding Artspace projects in other cities. Told me that Artspace first came to Buffalo back in 2000 looking at an opportunity in the 400 block of Elmwood Avenue. He described it as a missed opportunity. Brand new information for me.

Heard there might be a good link somewhere to the HGTV special about this project...someone please pass along the link. Wasted time last week with a dead one...
Update...8pm
Posted this back in August of 2006 - Byron TV.
The dead hgtv links are in this post, too. Loved the big yellow arrow.
What happened to it?
See also -
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Boarding Control - Part III

Next Saturday - January 27th at noon - if you have some time, maybe an hour or so, I could use some help. A few houses that are owned by Bethel Community Development Corporation are still wide open and present significant public health risks here in the neighborhood. Here's the map.

Here the previous posts and video: Boarding Control - Boarding Control-Part II (video)

I'd like to meet-up at my place - 75 Woodlawn Avenue. I've collected dozens of pieces of plywood and other boarding material over the last few years and would very much like to secure the houses that Secretary/Treasurer of Buffalo's Control Board - aka, Buffalo Fiscal Stability Authority. - controls through Bethel CDC.

Imagining a couple people measuring the openings, someone else cutting the boards and a few people nailing the boards in place. These places have been open for close to 18 months and there is no Housing Court file compelling Rev. Stenhouse to action.

I'll supply the tools...imagine in less than an hour, we'll be done. Hot chocolate will be provided...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Get Firefox

Installed a new sitemeter recently- allows me to see web traffic - replacing the older one. Allows me to see what browsers people are using to view this blog. 52% of my visitors from 48 different countries so far this year are still using Microsoft's Internet Explorer...again my blog looks terrible in IE as the right hand column drops down and fonts get all skewed in some of the posts.

If you haven't switched to Firefox 2.0, you should. Really cool toolbar, extensions and tabbed browsing that can't be beat.
The image “http://www.mozilla.com/img/firefox-title.png” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
If you are on a network at work and can't download or use Firefox 2.0 - consider Portable Firefox 2.0 for your flashdrive. I use it everyday on the go - cafe, school or on the road.

You'll see more using Firefox 2.0, really. What do you have to lose...download it and see.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

1/19/2007

Partners - January Newsletter...

Just received the latest e-newsletter from George Grasser and Partner's for a Liveable WNY - January 2007. George is adding hyperlinks to some of his commentary and notes for further exploration of what's happening here and around the country. Check it out.

I've archived past Partner's Newsletters, over here.
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Smart City...this weekend

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Smart City is a weekly, hour-long public radio talk show that takes an in-depth look at urban life, the people, places, ideas and trends shaping cities. Host Carol Coletta talks with national and international public policy experts, elected officials, economists, business leaders, artists, developers, planners and others for a penetrating discussion of urban issues.

This weekend...
  • Resilience is a quality that is greatly underrated in successful cities. Our guests this week are making their own special contributions to understanding how to make cities resilient.
  • Sadhu Johnston is leading what may be the nation's best known municipal green program. Sadhu is the Commissioner of the City of Chicago Department of Environment where he manages a whole host of programs intended to restore and protect Chicago's natural resources. Prior to working for the City of Chicago, Sadhu served as the Executive Director of the Cleveland Green Building Coalition.
  • Also with us is Brett Parson, winner of the Harvard Innovations in Government Award, about his success in breaking the barriers between the police and the gay community in Washington, D.C. Brett heads the DC police Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit.
Listen to host Carol Colletta - list of additional stations/times - 3pm on Saturday and 7pm Sunday on WNED - 970 in Buffalo, NY. Past Shows are archived and the newsletter is published regularly.
Smart City is underwritten by Buffalo, NY's own Hyde Family Foundation...thanks George!
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Urbex @ Transfiguration - Discovery Channel Video!

This afternoon I posted a request to Buffalo Issue Alerts and asked if anyone had a copy of the Discovery Channel's video of the Urbex that went on at the Transfiguration during the summer of 2005. Vince, quickly responded and sent along a file. I uploaded the material to Youtube and presto...here we go. Really amazing venture.

The first three minutes are devoted to a rather high-wire exploration of Transfiguration Church. The team also visited the Anchor Bar and poked around Concrete Central...a place I've yet to see, up close. This is the same video that Preservation Board members viewed during Thursday's meeting.

In case the video gets pulled for copywrite infringement, I've archived the footage in my esnips account - right here.

See also: Transfiguration Church archive...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

In the Country...40 miles away

Headed down to Perrysburg, NY on Sunday afternoon...room for one more in the car if you want to check things out. Email me. Very interesting connection back to Buffalo that I've written about extensively here - Where is Perrysburg? Was there two years ago, January 2005 for the first and last time.
The Former...JN Adam TB Hospital
The view here is looking north towards Buffalo and is the furthest spot south in the hills that you see from City Hall's observation deck. Word is that Commodore Perry - back in the day, 1813 - observed the British Fleet shortly after the burning of Buffalo from this location and hence the name, Perrysburg.

Here's my flickr slide show of the place - 40 Miles Away...

Plan to leave around noon...if you want to tag along, let me know. Back no later than 5...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

Transfiguration Church...new video

John Paget - see Paget Films - and I had the opportunity recently to visit Transfiguration Church. John shot four hours of video and has condensed some of the highlights in to this short two minute clip. I had the opportunity yesterday to share this video with Preservation Board members during their meeting. We also saw a longer piece that was shot by the Discovery Channel. First saw that video in 2005 and would love to get my hands on a copy. Was then that i learned for the first time that the bells were still in place. Ringing them is rather exciting...done it a few times.

Seems like people are just too casual, these days. On a personal and community level we avoid passionate commitment - the energy necessary to sustain structures like this. Our quest is for certainty and we avoid activity that requires faith. When we do this we kill beauty and things like this church become nothing more than a distant faded memory, dust. All rather tragic when you dwell on it and think about the treasures here that are now scattered...gone now, silent.
Make sure your speakers are on when you click play...

See also: Transfiguration Church archive...
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Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row Housesfaqmy flickr

1/18/2007

Writing The City...

I'll archive writing about Buffalo and keep track of it here. I'd like to feature local, regional and national writers presenting creative, critical and thoughtful insight into the problems that we face as a city and region. Feel free to comment and suggest articles, books and essays that hit close to home, stuff you think other people should be reading.
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