Preservation Round-Up: Reflecting on Buffalo Edition

Posted on: October 26th, 2011 by David Garber 1 Comment

A whole lotta... (Photo: National Trust for Historic Preservation)

Buffawhoa. That (and many other creative, lovable, and definitely-not-cheesy-at-all portmanteaus such as Buffalove and the ever-popular Buffalookatalltheseoldsilos) emerged as the general sentiment after last week's National Preservation Conference in Buffalo, New York. Conference attendees engaged with the city, and - with a sigh of "Finally!" and the help of efforts like Buffalo Unscripted - the city felt heard.

For our last strictly-Buffalo round-up (for now...), we wanted to spread the Buffalink love on stories that reflect back on conference week.

New for Buffalo: A superiority complex. The Buffalo News.
"Our inferiority complex as a downtrodden, Rust Belt city suffered a major blow over the past four days - and recovery may be difficult. ... To borrow a line from Sally Fields' 1985 Oscar acceptance speech: They liked you, Buffalo. They really liked you."

Impact from Preservation Conference Resonates Near and Far. WNED Buffalo Toronto.
"The head of the organization charged with boosting tourism in the region says last week's National Preservation Conference was "a game changer" for the community. Visit Buffalo Niagara President Dottie Gallagher-Cohen says the multi-year effort put into the conference was not just about its $4.5 million immediate economic impact. ... Gallagher-Cohen says many of the 2,500 preservationists were "blown away" by what they saw. She predicts the conference will be paying dividends for many years to come."

Preservation is the way – thoughts following #presconf.
"Here’s how I see it - yes, Buffalo has its problems.  But we’re not the only city that has problems.  We have great people, but we’re not the only city that has great people.  So what really distinguishes Buffalo?  What makes Buffalo Buffalo?  Location.  And History.  In one word -- Place."

Another Reason To Move To Buffalo: The Architecture Is Amazing.
"A year ago I wrote If You Really Want To Get Off Oil, Move To Buffalo, about its incredible infrastructure. What I didn't know at the time was that its architecture is absolutely extraordinary, and that the city is going through and exciting rebirth and revitalization."

As much as in buildings, renewal lies in the arts. The Buffalo News.
"...What may have floated under the radar for some conference attendees - at least those who missed the Trust’s extraordinarily moving and comprehensive documentary “Buffalo Unscripted” - is the head-spinning range and vitality of Buffalo’s active culture. That includes the city’s more than 20 professional theaters currently churning out work, its dozens of art galleries large and small and its growing trove of DIY art spaces - without which our storied edifices would serve merely as pretty headstones marking a monochrome landscape of faded glory."

Buffalo Unscripted moves a city.
"I arrived at Market Arcade Theatre a good hour and a half before the 7:30 p.m. film start time, and the place was already buzzing with excitement and Buffalove. By 6:30 p.m., rumors of the event selling out were already surfacing among event-goers in theater’s lobby and on Twitter. As guests were allowed into the theater shortly after 7 p.m., the excitement mounted, the #BUFunscripted tweets got heavier and the fun began."

David Garber is a member of the Digital and New Media team at the National Trust for Historic Preservation. He's never actually stepped foot in Buffalo, but after weeks and months of editing Buffalo-centric posts on this blog is now ultra pumped to visit.

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Conferences, General, News Round-Ups

One Response

  1. David Matthews

    November 2, 2011

    Thank you, thank you, Buffalo! I was thrilled with the “hard hat” tour of the Richardson Complex and the depth of outstanding architectural treasures you proudly display. I know they will be paramount to the success of the cultural and economic rebirth of your city.

    I only hope you take equal pride in the vast hidden history that lies in peril of commercial development, such as the historic Black Rock Union Meeting House and church at 44 E Breckenridge, between the river and Niagara Street — not to mention the last remaining example of the Mason Workman’s’ Cottages at 19 Mason Street, named after James Mason in the 1836 publication, “A Concise View of Black Rock.” It is the last chance to preserve the Pre-Civil War housing, once known as “The Mason Houses” that were developed along this previously picturesque, little street of the 19th Century, so aptly described by Frank Severance on page 272 of the Buffalo Historical Society’s “Picture Book of Earlier Buffalo.”

    Congratulations, Buffalo, on hosting such a successful conference.