Artspace Construction Archive

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Before and after at 1219 Main Street. Tour History contains various slideshows from a number of recent Saturday morning tours...
Artspace - 1219 Main Street artspacebuffalo00020zx
I'll keep track of the transformation of the building on the left to the building on the right. Make sure to visit about Artspace for all sorts of pre-construction information about the deal and the surrounding neighborhood that we now call Midtown! You may want to take a closer look at the City's planning document for the immediate neighborhood, too - Organic Revitalization: Artspace Buffalo. Additional information about the neighborhood is available in my Coe Place Archive.
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"Demolition by Neglect" meets Urbex...
For additional information:
Summer 2006 - Tour de Neglect
This is a three year old picture of the sanctuary of the Transfiguration Church located at the corner of Sycamore and Mills on the city's east-side. Here's the map.
Transfiguration Church - Interior
Last nite on the Discovery Channel an "urbex" team placed this abandoned, derelict and vacant church right in the face of the Masiello administration and Council President David Franczyk via national television.

Figmo from Buffalo Rising Journal is spreading the word about this forgotten and neglected architechtural treasure by reposting Mark's good work over at wnymedia.net who is hosting an 8 minute clip. You can see the inside of this church before it tumbles to the ground.
see the segment here
I've recently posted these pictures about the Transfiguration Church and other churches on the city's east side that are ready to crumble.

The segment also features a disturbing tour of Concrete Central, the city's Grain Silo's and a cool visit to the Anchor Bar.

Related Post: "Shirking Church, Shrinking City"
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Not My House..."Hotel New Hampshire"
With the negative social and urban policy implictations of Kelo v City of New London swirling around the local and national blogosphere, a truly innovative response to this disasterous ruling has been placed in the lap of the Weare, New Hamphire Board of selectmen (there are 5 members and 3 of the members are women) and home to Supreme Court Judge David Souter.
You Can't Take My House!
The innovative response - build a hotel on the site of Justice Souter's house! Call it - Lost Liberty Hotel and instead of Gideon bibles in the bedstand the developer will place copies of Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged.
On Monday June 27, Logan Darrow Clements, faxed a request to Chip Meany the code enforcement officer of the Towne of Weare, New Hampshire seeking to start the application process to build a hotel on 34 Cilley Hill Road. This is the present location of Mr. Souter's home.

Clements, CEO of Freestar Media, LLC, points out that the City of Weare will certainly gain greater tax revenue and economic benefits with a hotel on 34 Cilley Hill Road than allowing Mr. Souter to own the land.
Weare is just a little southwest of NH's capital, Concord. Here's a map showing where Justice Souter lives and the site of the proposed hotel.
Clements imagines liberty loving hotel guests and supporters of the Institute for Justice and the NH based Free State Project - check it out - will flock to the hotel.
Yesterday, Clements proposal was all over talk radio in the afternoon...Dr. Laura shamed her listeners for knowing more about the "runaway bride" than Kelo. Rush and Drudge were all over it. Locally, Carleton from Graduate Student Maddness commented about it in my previous Kelo post and Nancy Mingus just posted the link to Buffalo Issue Alerts.

Tomorrow afternoon I have another sit down with Buffalo City Planner, Allita Steward. I'll get the sense of where "Strategic Planning" sees this development.
Btw...for those of you more knowledgable than me about development issues here in Buffalo let me know what "eminent domain" condemnation hearings have been held recently here in Buffalo...
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More on....Kelo v. City of New London

I can't get this out of my head. From my daily tour of the blogosphere...
  • Planetizen posted the Christian Science Monitor's view of Kelo, too.
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Moving to DC...

Sunday was spent helping a friend (10 in 10 years) pack the U-Haul. He spent 8 years here pursuing a PhD in bio-chemistry and taught MBA classes at UB. He's now gone to another neighborhood...Adams Morgan in Washington DC. While publishing his first book last year and working on his second he kept talking about "density" and the need to be closer to people doing the same and similar sorts of consulting.
CoolTown Studios (if you are reading my blog, you should be reading that one, too) just posted about Adams Morgan last week. In a post Typical Neighborhood Scene at 2am? the scene reminded me of Pano's at that hour. And then the next day the companion post takes you up-stairs from the diner and shows you What's Really Going on Up-stairs.
Affinity Lab
Affinity Lab is a collective work space designed to inspire, encourage and promote the individual and collaborative production of digital media. The Lab has been developed to facilitate the needs of a variety of media production companies, freelancers and entrepreneurs of growing enterprises in Washington DC.

Founded by the partners of Articulated Impact, the space is located in midst of the eclectic shops, restaurants, pubs and coffee houses of 18th Street in Adams Morgan. The Lab is a cross-industry, cross-discipline cabal of producers, entrepreneurs, artists, activists and techies who seek to blur the boundaries of profit/non-profit, digital/analog, commodity/currency, business/pleasure, art/activism.

Dream on
This is the sort of entrepreneurial incubator and small business Buffalo needs

And then there's Tryst!
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A Day in the Country...

Slightly off topic, I know.

Since I started blogging, I've been connecting with people all over the world who are interested in what Buffalo used to be, is today and what it might become in the years ahead. Seems like the Internet has collapsed time and space and sped up dozens of introductions that, probably would have taken place anyway...but have now happened faster. Lia Oprea is one of these people and she lives down in Sardinia, NY at the Olmsted Camp. She's invited me to A Day in the Country which doubles as a fundraiser for the Western New York Land Conservancy.
Olmsted Camp

It's way off yet on Saturday August 6th, I know yet Lia wanted me to pass the invitation around to anyone who might be interested in coming out for alittle bit or the whole day. Check out the musical line-up and the opportunities for photographers and artists.

I've been fascinated by the night sky since I was a kid and a few years ago I bought my daughter a telescope that barely fits into the car. I imagine I'll be heading out in the next week or so to drop in and say hello to Lia and do some star gazing in a place where there is no ambient light and the sky is just the way it's supposed to be.
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Welcome to Perrysburg, NY...

...imagine that the tables were turned. Imagine that through some accident of history the City of New York held title to the Outer Harbor and refused to relinquish it unless and until it was developed in an environmentally-friendly manner -- oh, let's say a big park. The economic desperation of Buffalo would mean nothing, of course, because NYC rules.

Can you imagine what David Franczyk (and the environmentalists in Buffalo) would have to say about that?

My Current Writing...

  • 7/5/05 City of Good Neighbors...Not & Cindy Lauer's letter from Perrysburg
  • 6/13/05 An update
  • 5/9/05 Another City Park
  • 3/17/05 Introduction and additional background
  • 2/5/05 City of Good Neighbors - Early History of the Site, Part II
  • 2/5/05 A New City Park?
  • 1/20/05 A Match Made in Perrysburg
  • 1/19/05 Killing the Forest to Save a Few Trees
  • 1/18/05 Who's Running This Place?
  • 1/17/05 One Flew East, One Flew West...
  • 1/16/05 Blogging from Perrysburg - Early History of the Site, Part I
Legal documents...
Photos of JN Adam site...
Recent Buffalo News articles and letters...
  • Friends of JN Adam & a petition to save the trees from the diabolical ax wielding Tom Trathen. PLUS new pictures showing very few trees on the site, back in the day.
  • 7/8/05 Last Gasp for Hospital, by Elizabeth Benjamin

In upstate New York, the Adirondack town of Saranac Lake is synonymous with tuberculosis treatment. Patients with the disease came to the picturesque waterfront community, where TB research pioneer Edward Livingston Trudeau had his laboratory, to sit on the porches of massive Victorians and take “the rest cure,” a regime based on fresh air and relaxation.

But there were other lesser known TB treatment facilities scattered around the state, including one built outside Buffalo...
ArtspaceBAVPAWoodlawn Row HousesfixBuffalo flickr
the creativity exchangeshrinking cities


Kelo v. City of New London

This is not good!

Here's an analysis that includes portions of Judge Clarence Thomas's dissent as it appeared in today's Wall Street Journal. I've archived it in case you don't subscribe.

Read what other Wall Street Journal readers are saying about Kelo, over here.

Susette Kelo said this...
I was in this battle to save my home and, in the process, protect the rights of working class homeowners throughout the country. I am very disappointed that the Court sided with powerful government and business interests.
susette_kelo_5 susette-kelo-22
Susette Kelo
Craig, over at America's North Coast, is the only other Buffalo Blogger picking up on this story. This Land is my Land is Craig's intro into this development.

Susette Kelo was represented by attorneys from the Institute for Justice. They made this statement shortly after the 5-4 Supreme Court decision was issued. Lots of good case back ground there, too.
Late nite Monday 2:13 am
Figmo, over at Buffalo Rising Journal has posted The Upside of Emminent Domain.
Check it out for all sorts of good comments.

And, don't miss what the Property Rights Foundation of America has to say
about Kelo v. City of New London. Yikes!
The dispute, known as Susette Kelo v. City of New London, centers around a single principle-whether the government can condemn property to transfer it to another private party for the claimed “public purpose” of economic development. During recent years, government agencies far and wide have been condemning urban properties using the excuse that the properties are “blighted,” whether or not this is reasonably the case, but with the Fort Trumbull neighborhood, the city is exercising its eminent domain power solely on the basis of economic development. Therefore, the question that the homeowners are presenting to the U. S. Supreme Court is narrowly defined to that of whether, or to what degree, economic development is a constitutional reason for eminent domain.
Seems like the question, now becomes this. What protection does the Fifth Amendment's public use requirement provide for individuals whose property is being condemned, not to eliminate slums or blight, but for the sole purpose of "economic development" that will perhaps increase tax revenues and improve the local economy?

Answers anyone?

Oh...and here's some more of the dissent written by Justice Clarence Thomas...
The Court has elsewhere recognized “the overriding respect for the sanctity of the home that has been embedded in our traditions since the origins of the Republic,” Payton, supra, at 601, when the issue is only whether the government may search a home. Yet today the Court tells us that we are not to “second-guess the City’s considered judgments,” ante, at 18, when the issue is, instead, whether the government may take the infinitely more intrusive step of tearing down petitioners’ homes. Something has gone seriously awry with this Court’s interpretation of the Constitution. ** Though citizens are safe from the government in their homes, the homes themselves are not.** ----------------
From Page 53 of the KELO v. CITY OF NEW LONDON
And Wikipedia is all over Kelo v. City of New London.

Following the decision, many of the plaintiffs expressed an intent to find other means by which they could continue contesting the seizure of their homes. However, the Supreme Court having disposed of the eminent domain issue, the only legal avenue left to Kelo and her fellow residents may be to contest the fairness of the amount that the city intends to pay for the land - the city has reportedly set aside $1.6 million to buy all 15 homes, and city officials believe that they will be in possession of the property within a few months.

Obviously, the wider effect of Kelo remains to be seen. It will have little effect in the eight states that specifically prohibit the use of eminent domain for economic development except to eliminate blight: Arkansas, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, South Carolina and Washington. Most legal experts do not see a rush by cities to take advantage of the decision.

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Weekly Google Fix!

If you haven't checked out the latest from A Daily Dose of Architecture about google map madness you should. A recent post, The Grand Tour, showcases the design work of architect Renzo Piano spotted from 10 miles up in the Google reconnaissance satellite and surveillance drone. The tour includes images of the Centre Georges Pompidou. That's in France for the three red-voters reading this.
Auditorium Parco Della Musica - Rome Potzdamer Platz Reconstruction - Berlin Centre Georges Pompidou - Paris
click to enlarge
And Figmo over at Buffalo Rising picked up on what's going to help turn Buffalo into the centre of cool and creativity. He featured today what I was writing about two weeks ago regarding wireless internet connectivity for the Queen City. Yes!...he is now linking to the Buffalo "wi-fi" map that I created using GmapTrack.

Let me know of other "open sites" that you can get a wireless signal or other public sites that I may have missed.

Still can't get enough...wanna see Istanbul, Kabul and Cairo...
High resolution images of the rest of the world.
World Changing is all over it. So is Scavengergoogle!
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Amy & Megan's List of Buffalo Blogs...

Looks like Amy Maxwell & Megan Weaver from Revitalize Buffalo have just put together the most comprehensive listing of Buffalo area Blogs...it's on the right hand side. And they found room for this little blog kicking and screaming from this corner of Masten, too!
Revitalize Buffalo's Blogroll
79 blogs providing a much needed, often critical and an altogether fresh perspective on life here in this part of the world.
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Housing Court & City Hall's 3rd Floor...
While Buffalo City Court Judge Henry Nowak continues to embrace innovative and collaborative programs to streamline and help make Buffalo a better place to live, it seems like some people over on the the 3rd floor of City Hall haven't gotten the message about...innovation! Read more about Judge Nowak's innovative programs.
Judge Nowak
Harvey Garrett, west-side housing activist, said in today's Buffalo News...

Garrett, the housing activist, doesn't blame the clerk. He blames McGurn.

"If he's a couple of weeks behind because of a staffing issue, that's understandable," Garrett said. "But to be four months behind when he's being offered interns and volunteers is unacceptable and mind-boggling." Read the complete story.
While we need to ask these questions on the "front end" of Housing Court, and a compelling case could be made to involve interns from UB Law School to do property research we can't forget about the equally important "back end" of Housing Court.

Here, consent agreements are signed by property owners for demolition. Often payment arrangements are agreed to where by the property owner agrees to pay the City on a monthly basis. Guess what...often is the case that after a few payments are made the property owner stops payment. Go figure.

In other cases, when the property owner fails to show up for Housing Court, a warrant is issued for their arrest. Today's Buffalo News article never addressed that question. I've been told that there are hundreds perhaps close to 1000 outstanding warrants that just sit on the shelf. Thing is no one is around to serve them. There used to be a Buffalo Cop, Officer Murphy that served these warrants and more recently an Erie County Sheriffs Deputy, Captain Rozanski. But today there is no one. Go figure. Within one block of my home there are 5 warrants outstanding for owners of property similar to the "fruit belt" property described in today's Buffalo News. No enforcement.

How 'bout involving some of those interns from UB Law School and creating a "Housing Court Crime Map" showing the property's location and last known owner address. Model it after ChicagoCrime.org. Seems like another low cost and innovative solution to "enforcement." I mean if owners of derelict and neglected property know that a "Housing Court" warrant doesn't mean anything. Why show up?

Oh...and what about all that abandoned, boarded, derelict and vacant City of Buffalo owned property...ouch!
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CAO on Dodge Street?
For those of you who are not familiar with this complex of buildings it is the former German Roman Catholic Orphan Home. I first started writing about this place last winter. I've visited the site numerous times this Spring and the condition of the various buildings continues to deteriorate. Is this another text book case of demolition by neglect?
This map may help orientate you to the site. I've prepared a slide show that includes pics from various visits. Check out the slide show and consider entering your comments below regarding "demolition by neglect."
DSCN1024 DSCN1020 DSCN1563
click to enlarge
The Erie County CAO owns this site. Nathan Hare is the Executive Director. He can be reached at 716-881-5150. And yes, the newest Catholic Parish in Buffalo recently built a McChurch on the site. It's called St. Martin de Porres.
DSCN0854 DSCN0860
click to enlarge
Lots more links and pics in this October 2005 post.
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"Fugitive & Notorious"...Update
On Monday, Buffalo City Court Housing Judge Henry Nowak slapped "fugitive & notorius" slum-lord Venere Hutchinson and his wife Dana Upcher with a series of fines totalling $79,000. I first mentioned this case, last month when the two were caught by a former class-mate, Andy Ratcliff, now a state trooper in Cleveland, TN during a routine traffic stop.
The Buffalo News reported yesterday...

Two former Buffalo landlords were fined more than $79,000 on Monday and told that they face trial next month on further city housing and health code violations at their former city properties.

Venere Hutchinson, 29, and his wife, Dana, 33, who were once cited as among the city's worst slumlords, received the sentence in Housing Court from Judge Henry J. Nowak. The judge told the couple that unless they pay their fines in the next 30 days, they face jail terms. Read full story.
Venere Hutchinson - "Fugitive & Notorius"
630 High Street - Hutchinson & Upcher Property Venere Hutchinson 630 High Street - West View (Fox & High Streets)
click to enlarge 630 High Street photos
Let's assume that the fines go un-paid and the duo opts for additional jail time on top of a very likely federal sentence for mortgage fraud. The city will most obviously still be stuck with demolition costs relating to a number of their properties. The unanswered questions in this case linger just beneath the surface and bump into some un-comfortable territory regarding HUD's role in the sale of 40 properties that this duo purchased and re-mortgaged. Let's see if the Buffalo News will investigate this...where is Dick Kern when you need him...
The largest of these properties is the building that sits at the end of High Street at the intersection of Genesee Street. (Yes High & Genesee intersect. It's part of the old Buffalo street plan that was decimated by the "scar" aka as the 33 that cuts the city in half.) 630 High Street is a significant four story structure and sits in an important place along side a number of other buildings occupying this portion of Genesee Street. Provided that the building is still in stable structural condition, an adaptive re-use plan should be adopted for this location.
Let's be careful. Last time this sort of idea was explored as part of a "Housing Court" settlement, Scott Witzig from Houston TX was forced to give up his ownership interest in the old German Roman Catholic Orphan Home on Dodge Street. He turned it over to the Erie County CAO as part of a massive settlement with the City of Buffalo.

And for the past two years it would appear that they haven't spent a penny on the place. Will someone please tell Nathan Hare, Executive Director of the Erie County CAO, to please buy a lawn mower and begin taking possesion of this place. If you are as disgusted with the complete lack of attention this former orphange is receiving as many people are, please call Nathan Hare. He can be reached at 716-881-5150. These pictures were taken last week.
CAO Property on Dodge Street CAO Property on Dodge Street
click to enlarge Dodge Street photos
In other words the non-profit entity that ends up getting 630 High Street, should be viable and ready to hit the ground running with an adaptive re-use plan.
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McPost Office 14209?
Seems like the chain of command was out to lunch. While the big boys were making plans to make this move nobody actually told Station Manager Marvin Randolph or building owner Mark Pagano that Station C, what we know as the Main Street Post Office, is about to get a new home, until Wednesday the day of the hearing.
28 people, mostly area residents - a few Linwood Avenue Coalition members, Nathan Neuman from NMG, über good guy George Grasser, Karen from Congresswomans Slaughter's office and PO officials from every level - local, regional and national gathered at Belmont Shelter to discuss the move which officials would like to see completed in the next 18 months.

We were told by William C. Monerief (title to follow) that the current 7000 sqft facility is too small. He wants a 11,000 sqft facility built along "national standards" with 67 parking places. The clock on the official "45 day period of notification" began ticking last night and a site selection notice will be posted for the next 30 days in local papers including the Challenger and Criterion. He wants something within a one mile radius of the current site - 1245 Main Street - but located in the North St./Canisius - Delaware Ave/Humboldt Highway - service area. Marvin Randolph was asked what sort of trucks arrive at the current location on a daily basis. He said 3 40' trucks in the morning and 3 40' in the afternoon.

A number of participants voiced concerns about the importance of a pedestrian friendly design on Main Street.

Allita Steward from Strategic Planning led the meeting and promised a number of public meetings once a series of sites are choosen. I have full faith in Allita's ability to keep us on track. While we are engaged in this planning process let's keep in mind that what many consider to be among the worst offenders can often be pushed to do the right thing. The first example here is a McDonalds in Corfu and the other in Rothenburg, Germany. It can be done, right!
McDonalds - Corfu McDonalds - Germany, Rothenburg
click to enlarge
George Grasser cautioned postal officials that a "one sized fits all approach" to the planning and design will not be tolerated. This after hearing about the PO's "linear operation" several times and at least one reference to McDonald's approach to replacing at least 10% of their retail stores on an annual basis.

Let's remember that these people work for us and let's remind them every step of the way that this section of Main Street is unique and that the "one size fits all approach" doesn't work!

I'll be posting all the players e-mail address in the next few days so you can contact everyone with your thoughts and opinions regarding this community based decision. I'll maintain a section of my blog for this project and in general do my best to keep people informed. Please feel free to comment in the place below, share pictures of good urban POs and chime in on site selection issues, too.

Just received this from Masten Councilman, Antoine Thompson...


I did not get the call until yesterday. Were you able to go to the meeting? I would like to relocate them on to Jefferson and East Utica. This would bring a tremendous amount of traffic on to Jefferson Avenue.


Jefferson Avenue & Riley
I think he means one block away from this "sub-urban" Tops at Jefferson & Riley. Something tells me this is going to be more than interesting. Never a dull day on this side of Main Street.

Neighborhood Preservation Collaborative

In case you missed it, last Thursday evening about 70 preservation and community minded residents had the opportunity to listen to one of our most enlightened public officials, City Court Judge Henry Nowak, describe the rational and neccessity for a new attitude and collaborative city wide effort to prevent further destruction of our urban fabric by that all to familiar dynamic "demolition by neglect." The Common Council Chambers was a perfect place, despite the heat, to begin this necessary work.

Here's the story that appeard in the Buffalo News last Thurday announcing it.
Thoughtful Preservation

Nowak effort could spark orderly method of dealing with architectural heritage issues

If it takes judicial pressure to get Buffalo's disparate preservation forces to work together in a proactive effort to save the city's historic architecture, so be it.

City Housing Court Judge Henry Nowak, a jurist who already has made his mark on city planning and preservation, is convening a new Neighborhood Preservation Collaborative to swap the typical stop-the-bulldozers reaction to demolition threats with a reasoned and coordinated effort to assess the city's treasures and figure out the best ways to deal with them. It's a voluntary effort by all concerned, but the judge is using the prestige of his office and his record to make it work. Read the full article.
I've archived a complete description of the new Neighborhood Preservation Collaborative and the 8 special committees that have been formed.
          • Home Owner Assistance - Harvey Garrett
          • Neighborhood Awareness - Tim Tielman
          • Evaluations- Scot Fisher
          • Comparative Research- Marilyn Rodgers
          • Adaptive Reuse - Richard Baer
          • Marketing/Development - Dennie Galucki
          • Legal/Professional Research - Richard Lippes
          • Architechtural Salvage- Chris Brown
Spirits were high as participants met with committee heads and discussed preliminary issues. Plans were made to meet as committees and get right down to business.

I did have a brief opportunity to present Judge Nowak the Petition to Save The Woodlawn Row Houses. I think it's the textbook case of "demolition by neglect" here in the city...we'll see how it goes.

I signed up to work on the Evaluations Committee with Scot Fisher. I'll be reporting back as to how this and the other committees develop over the next few months.
Make sure to check out the slide show Newell put together that documents
some of the splendor inside Buffalo's City Hall. He's got a couple
snaps of the skylight in Council Chambers where we met the other nite.
And if you haven't see Buffalo Rising yet, do it now!
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Post Office 14209..Re-locating
Last week Thursday I had the opportunity to sit down with Allita Steward, city planner who reports directly to Tim Wannamaker. We met at Quaker Bonnet on Allen and during the course of 90 minutes I had the opportunity to pick her brain about plans for this side of Main Street. I'll save the major announcement regarding the branding of an arts and educational district on this side of Main Street for another post. She really helped me understand the difference between lofts and apartments..."cool" and just another wtf happened sort of project. Super creative and innovative and exactly what's needed to keep this ship from sinking any further.

We spent a good part of our conversation talking about what has and hasn't worked over here. Very cool conversation about race and how may have played in the decision to hire the most prominent African-american architect in Buffalo to design the prison-style or "six-pack" library on Jefferson & Utica. Yes, I've completly changed my position on this library. She informed me that NYC has a couple of all black architectural firms that design urban libraries all over the country. We both agreed that we should have out-sourced on that project. The urgency to build just anything, like Circus Maximus, is compelling yet should be resisted. We end up with total suburban bull-shit like this...and a library with out windows.
Jefferson Avenue & Riley DSCN0323
Allita clued me in on the post office re-location over here in 14209. The (only one?) public hearing is:
Wednesday June 15th
6pm at Belmont Shelter
1195 Main Street
I strongly urge as many people as possible to attend this meeting. I've set up a forum thread on Cyburbia to help keep track of issues and developments. I also contacted the three Common Council members who may end up playing a large role in this rapidly developing planning project. See, this section of Main Street is actually shared by Delaware, Ellicott and Masten. Let me tell you, they really didn't know anything about this hearing.
  • Delaware district includes the west side of Main from Ferry to Harvard
  • Ellicott is where 14209 is currently located
  • Masten includes east-side of Main Street from Utica north towards Canisius
Map of Possible New Locations
I was on the phone today with Congressman Blumenauer, 3rd district Oregon. He has sponsored legislation recently called the Post Office Accountability Act. From my discussion with his staff members in Portland and DC, the post office simply ran a pretty rough show in Portland recently and "photo-shopped" a new PO complete and with out sidewalks!

Seems pretty clear to me that if we want a suburban style PO on Main Street, just stay home on Wednesday evening. If you want something that looks more like the new Lexington Co-op, pedestrian friendly and in-keeping with the urban fabric, jump on your bike or walk over to Belmont Shelter on Wednesday evening. It's right across the street from Delta Sonic...

More about my meeting with Allita...later.
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Remember this...

Art Across Borders? It happened during our Pan-Am celebrations back in 2001. Well it turns out that one of Tom Trathen's companies, Trathen International, Inc., provided generous financial and material support to this event. See the list of corporate sponsorship.
panamLogo logo

Art Across Borders was a project of the Women in the Arts focus group, a sub-committee of the Women's Pavilion Pan-American 2001.

Project Overview
In celebration of the Pan-American Exposition Centennial, the Women in the Arts Focus Group of the Women’s Pavilion Pan-American 2001 presented a public art project which, international in scope, installed public works of art exploring the theme "Pan-American Women: Past, Present, and Future." Artists who live or work in the bi-national, Erie-Niagara region produced works that document, imagine, and interpret the roles, history, and achievements of women in North, Central, and South America.

So why this post?
Tom Trathen is the guy who wants to buy the property down in Perrysburg, NY that Common Council President David Franczyk wants to turn into a city of Buffalo park. We've come to know the property as the JN Adam Developmental Site or the JN Adam TB Hospital.

I've written extensively about the deal that David Franczyk is thwarting. The only thing new to add is that Tom Trathen is now engaged in lengthy protracted legal battle with the city of Buffalo and various NYS agencies. David Franczyk has stopped returning my phone calls and refuses to discuss what his plans for the site might include.
It’s understandable that David Franczyck would like to save the trees in Perrysburg. His forest disappeared a long time ago. It used to be known as the Fillmore District and is now home to more blighted buildings per block than any urban center this side of Calcutta. A recent walk down Koons Avenue last week demonstrates the neglect and lack of serious attention to our urban core. I counted 19 houses boarded and vacant in a two block stretch of Koons Avenue. I mean there were only 50 houses on the street. March 17, 2005
While our tax base continues to shrink, our population continues to diminish at the rate of 15 people/day...will some one please remind why we need a new city park?

And if Buffalo comes out on top and actually becomes the steward of this property down in Perrysburg, like how are we going to pay for it. These first three pics were taken recently in David Franczyk's Broadway/Fillmore district. The last two are from Perrysburg. Here some more pics from Perrysburg.
Demolition by Neglect...Buffalo Style!
768 Broadway Transfiguration Church 198 Emslie JN Adam - Perrysburg, NY JN Adam - Perrysburg, NY
click to enlarge
Buffalo, the city of good neighbors? Not if you ask the people of Perrysburg. Tom Trathen is the sort of guy who supports the arts because he wants to. Let's not give him anymore reason to turn his back on Buffalo. We need Tom more than he needs us. It's really that simple.
Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row HousesTour dé Neglect - 2006faq
Way off Topic...I know...
Something personal...a missed opportunity me thinks. I met Elsie Parker one steamy summer night in Marlboro VT a few years back. She is know heading up The Poor People of Paris. She e-mails me updates now on a regular basis. Her, "Entre Nous" or "Elle se souvient" couldn't be about anything I had something to do with. If you are in the St. Louis area you should be checking out her shows.
And if you are in VT for the summer you should be checking out the Marlboro Music Festival. A few years back Rudolf Serkin was the artistic director. These days Richard Goode and Mitsuko Uchida direct. Seven years there...the time of my life.
Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row HousesTour dé Neglect - 2006faq
I Missed the Party...
Frank Lloyd Wright would have been 138 this year. He died on April 9, 1959. CK, over at Buffalo Rising didn't miss it. Great post, pics & flw links. The good folks at google had a googely graphic up all day June 8th. In case you missed it ...
Google - Frank Lloyd Wright
And for those of you who are keeping track, today is Christo's 70th birthday (Jeanne-Claude's too...same year and date!) and my favorite modern designer Charles Eames would have been 98 on Friday, June 17th. My favorite chair! Purchased at a yard sale last year for $30.00!
Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row HousesTour dé Neglect - 2006faq
Ok, You Already Know I'm Addicted...
Can't get enough of this google crack. Adrian Holovaty developed ChicagoCrime.org and saw the little button I placed on my blog taking you to his site. He said, "Whoa...cool!"
Here's the lastest buzz from Technology Review...

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Tracking sexual predators in Florida. Guiding travelers to the cheapest gas nationwide. Pinpointing $1,500 studio apartments for rent in Manhattan.

Geeks, tinkerers and innovators are crashing the Google party, having discovered how to tinker with the search engine's mapping service to graphically illustrate vital information that might otherwise be ignored, overlooked or not perceived as clearly.

I put this "Buffalo Wi-Fi Map" together earlier using google maps to keep track of "wi-fi" service in Buffalo. Now, how about preservationists getting it together to track and market "historic buffalo."

Other GmapTrack stuff that just caught my eye includes this map which keeps track of registered sex offenders somewhere in Oklahoma.

Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row HousesTour dé Neglect - 2006faq


If you haven't checked out BuffaloResearch.com, you should. It never seems to fail that wherever I go in my mind...google trips...I find something bringing me right back to BuffaloResearch.com. I've always wondered how a librarian manages to do all this. Cynthia Van Ness, aka Betty Barcode, has managed to stitch together an incredible treasure trove of stuff about the Queen City.
I even found Cynthia's cv on-line...and of course this...
Victorian Buffalo
Cynthia Van Ness is pleased to announce that her first book, Victorian Buffalo, has gone into its second printing at Western New York Wares and is available at local bookstores. Out-of-towners can order it through their favorite local booksellers or mail order through the publisher or buy from a certain well-known online bookseller.
Cynthia has been a tremendous supporter of my little Masten neighborhood initiative to save the Woodlawn Row Houses. In her spare time she blogs about the Green House on Grant Street and moderates a few yahoo group lists like Buffalo Issues Alerts.

I swear it was Cynthia I saw yesterday afternoon peddling down the street, sporting a new lap-top on her handlebars...
Artspace ArchiveAnnals of NeglectBAVPAWhere is Perrysburg?Broken Promises...
Writing the CityWoodlawn Row HousesTour dé Neglect - 2006faq