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New Outer Harbor Feature Readies for Official Spring Opening

Work on the breakwall at Buffalo Harbor State Park looks as if it will soon be complete. Most of the planned features have been implemented, including a new gateway overlook, a new terminus overlook, and new fishing access points. This should be considered a “no brainer” project. Essentially, what was once simply a breakwall has become a destination for joggers, cyclists, and even people who like to fish. The main component (the wall) was already in place, which meant that there was a natural path to follow when it came to designing the walkway. 

Views from the walkway are twofold. On one side is Lake Erie, looking onto Canada. The other side is a view onto Charlie’s Boat Yard and the Small Boat Harbor. Other  items of interest include lots of lighting, two areas with steps leading down towards the water (for sitting or fishing – there is no real water access), a four ramp boat launch (would be a great dog park when boats aren’t being launched, but I didn’t say that), and stone benches.

The only real issue that I see with the site is the giant asphalt parking lot for vehicles with boat trailers. It would have been great to see designers use some sort of pavers or sturdy gravel instead of asphalt. Asphalt might be a cheap and easy solution for parking lots and walkways, but it can also be more expensive in the longterm, because asphalt doesn’t last as long when compared to concrete for example. Moreover, asphalt is just plan ugly, and environmentally unfriendly unless it’s permeable, which this probably isn’t. There is no reason that we should not be looking at green parking lots, roadways, trails, etc., in this day and age. After all, we have tossed around the idea.

Entranceway to walkway
To the right is a new boat launch with parking for trailers – four launches total
Long winding walkway
A different harbor layout with new permanent docks can be seen in the water. This is a Safe Harbor operation – docks started going in the water this past December, paid for by Safe Harbor as part of a $10 million contractual agreement with NYS.

Steps leading down to the water on the marina side of the walkway
A second access point. Smaller set of steps leading down to the water. Boulders prevent direct interaction with water
Elbow overlook with whalebone-looking trellis that will accommodate foliage cover
Terminus overlook to eventually feature foliage cover

Terminus overlook, peering towards elbow overlook

Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

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