Pledge drive! Newell and I joined WBFO News Director Mark Scott in Studio B of Allen Hall to discuss the past week’s events (podcast here), along with making an impromptu plug for pledges to this listener funded public radio station. If you haven’t pledged yet, there’s still time.
We talked about the Canal project and spent a little time talking about the public hearing and the parking ramp that seems to be a bone of contention with area stakeholders. What is the solution to parking in the area? Maybe the best answer involves a meld of parking and better public transportation.
Next we talked about the Albright-Knox. They have a new board president in Leslie Zemsky and a lot of money for new works, but skipped a year of Rockin’ at the Knox and decreased staff and museum hours, as well as the Collectors Gallery that featured the works of area artists. County Executive Chris Collins made a gift of extra county funding to them last week, at the same time that he announced the closing and consolidation of two health clinics on the city’s East Side, and we discussed the need for culturals and citizen services.
We moved on to art shows, the ones that depict ruins, forgotten places, destruction, discarded places and materials and, finally, wastelands. BRO readers have bristled at the use of the term wastelands, but others have defended the meaning of the word in the case of the work of two visiting Danish architecture students. Let’s not forget the national coverage we get for our gems such as the Darwin Martin complex, our gardens, our architecture in general. We can probably afford a hard look at our post-industrial ruins. Shame or new opportunity, they exist and will eventually be dealt with. It’s good to have people thinking about these things, rather than turning a blind eye.
Next, we talked about our scoop on the purchase of the Hotel Lafayette by local developer extraordinaire Rocco Termini. One Buffalo Rising reader expressed his great esteem for Rocco by asking him to marry him. That’s some endorsement. But Rocco has a long list of accomplishments, and we’re very happy the hotel made its way into his very able hands. Go, Rocco!
This segued into a talk about the Main Place Mall, its listing on Craigslist, and what the mall might become. Have to love the citizen urban planners on BRO.
We ended on Route 5, which opened its new elevated strip recently. “Let’s build another one just like the other one?” It’s there, and Newell isn’t happy; apparently he didn’t buy the psych of being inconvenienced for months on end while the “road to derision” was built.
Image: Nathan Mroz