Following is an update by Ardmore resident Gabe Schmidbauer who has been keeping a close eye on recent developments concerning the uncovering of an almost 100% intact brick street (see background):
Yesterday all of the blacktop was easily removed from the street. In the afternoon, Steve Stepniak once again visited our street with Mike Flynn – they both gave the bricks a thorough inspection. There was a bit of damage on each end of the street but no deal breakers. Stepniak then ordered a street cleaning and a high power flush to further inspect the bricks and assess the drainage outlook for the street. Stepniak also invited Buffalo Sewer Authority (BSA) upper level management to observe the storm drainage environment. After a thorough analysis of these factors Stepniak and the BSA were impressed with the outlook for restoring the street to brick. The BSA said that a brick Ardmore Place will put less burden on the already overburdened Buffalo combined sewer system by serving as a permeable surface. Tomorrow morning, crews will be installing temporary driveway bonnets until a final decision is made. Stepniak is optimistic that they will be able to “sell” the restoration to Mayor Brown and other City management. He said we should hear back with a final decision by early next week. As you can see from the photos, It is really quite beautiful. – GS
*The news of the uncovered brick street is making waves as of late. Among city residents, preservationists and others, NYS Senator Tim Kennedy has expressed an interest in helping Ardmore residents, as can be seen here in this letter that he recently sent to City Hall:
Dear Commissioner Stepniak,
I write to bring your attention to an opportunity to enhance the desirability and appeal of the Ardmore Place neighborhood. As you are likely aware, resurfacing work on Ardmore began recently. Upon stripping the old asphalt, residents were pleasantly surprised to see that the street’s original brick paving stones were still intact. Instead of repaving with new asphalt, exposing and preserving the brick road would be a wonderful way to improve the neighborhood.
Most homes on Ardmore were built at the beginning of the 20th century and they still retain their early-1900s charm. The return of the street’s original brick paving would dovetail nicely with the restoration work being done on the rear half of Lafayette High School that runs along Ardmore Place. Walking down the street would be like a trip back in time to Buffalo 100 years ago.
In addition, the brick paving stones meld nicely with the City’s new Green Code by allowing rainwater to permeate through the gaps in the bricks, helping to reduce the problem of sewer overflows. Combined with Ardmore’s location off of Colonial Circle and in the Elmwood Village area, the restoration of the street’s original brick is a logical step and is a win-win for both residents and the City.
If there is anything I can do to assist the city, or if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me in my district office at 716.826.2683.
Timothy M. Kennedy
New York State Senator, 63rd District