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Jane’s Walk Offers Four Jane Jacobs-inspired Tours This Weekend

Jane’s Walk, the global festival occurring May 5, 6, and 7th, is a movement of free, citizen-led walking tours inspired by Jane Jacobs. The walks get people to tell stories about their communities, explore their cities, and connect with neighbors. This weekend, Buffalo is hosting four Jane’s Walks at Lockport, Fillmore/Leroy, Northland Corridor, and Upper Rock.Tune in to the Jane’s Walk Facebook page for information and updates. Here’s the walk descriptions:

Possibility & History in Lockport, NY 
Meet at Union Station Ruins
Led by Kevin McDonough
May 6, 2017, 11:00 AM, 2 Hours
Led by Kevin McDonough, one of the city’s leading experts on our architectural heritage, we will walk through the downtown corridor of Lockport exploring some of our most historic buildings, while focusing on the potential and possibilities that Lockport offers. Starting at Union Station and ending at the Bewley Building this walk will visit 5 landmarks in the Lockport downtown, each building holding a special place in the history of the city. We will be focusing on the growth of the city and be encouraging all walk attendees to participate in the discussion, giving us their insights on what they would love to see in the city. Working together we will build the community’s involvement in the City and the business’ involvement in the community.
Fillmore & Leroy/Central Park Plaza
Meet at Key Bank (Pierce Arrow Showroom), 2421 Main St.
Led by Derik Kane
May 6, 2017, 3:00 PM, 2 Hours
The Fillmore & Leroy / Central Park Plaza neighborhood was once a vibrant working class community. Unfortunately, this area is now a symbol of the consequences of severe disinvestment in America’s legacy cities. –:– We will start the walk at the TriMain Building by discussing the early history and development of this area, including how its proximity to the NY Central Beltline shaped it. As we walk, we will make stops to talk about the local businesses and industry that once lined the streets. –:– Next we will head towards the site of the new Highland Park project, a residential complex being developed on the site of the former Central Park Plaza. Here we will reflect on how the choice to develop this suburban style shopping plaza factored into the areas decades long decline. But with the recent investments there is great promise for the neighborhood. –:– The tour will conclude at Blessed Trinity Church, the first local landmark in Buffalo where I will give a brief history of this unique architectural landmark.
Northland Corridor Redevelopment Project: Belt Line Makeover 
Meet at Niagara Machine & Tool Works, 683 Northland Avenue
Led by Peter Cammarata, Dave Stebbins, and Barbara Campagna
May 7, 2017, 10:30 AM, 1.5 Hours
The Northland Corridor Redevelopment Project is a far-reaching economic development initiative set to remake a little known, historically mighty industrial strip along Northland Avenue adjacent to the Buffalo Belt Line. Kickstarted by Mayor Byron Brown and now a critical piece of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Buffalo Billion, the Northland Corridor Redevelopment Project is part brownfield reclamation, part historic preservation project—overall, an initiative to re-spark the manufacturing sector of the East Side. Peter Cammarata and Dave Stebbins, President and Vice President of the Buffalo Urban Development Corporation (BUDC), and Barbara Campagna, preservation architect for the Northland Corridor Redevelopment Project, will be your guides at the 35-acre project. Stops will include the Niagara Machine & Tool Works, Houde Engineering Complex and Factory, and Otis Elevator Company Foundry. These factory buildings were innovative for their time, built from 1910 and thereafter, and designed by architects such as Green & Wicks. Construction is set to begin on the WNY Workforce Training Center, a $60 million facility to be built at the long-vacant Niagara Machine & Tool Works, 683 Northland Avenue. This will be the first phase in the build-out of the Northland Corridor Redevelopment Project, and the first stop on the walk. Prepare to be stunned by vast, sky-lit spaces and gantry crane hooks the size of an elephant. Learn how this Belt Line industrial cluster helped shaped Buffalo in early 20th century, and how the new business park will attract high-quality employment opportunities, honor Buffalo’s industrial heritage, and help revive the adjacent residential neighborhood. This walk is your chance to experience the Northland Corridor in the “quiet before the storm”—only weeks before construction crews get to work. Meet at Niagara Machine & Tool Works, 683 Northland Avenue, on Sunday, May 7, 10:30 am. The first 50 participants will get a free Jane Jacobs pin!
Upper Rock
Meet at Broderick Park
Led by Barbara Rowe & Grace Andriette
May 7, 2017, 1:00 PM, 1.5 Hours
Local residents Barbara Rowe and Grace Andriette will give walkers an inside look at the resurgence of the Niagara Street corridor in what was once known as Upper Black Rock. We’ll start at Broderick Park. The walking route includes:
– The underground Railroad and industrial history
– Breckenridge church, the oldest church in Buffalo
– 1215 Niagara Street, a former butcher shop and future home of Stitch Buffalo
– 1318 Niagara Street, a DEC clean up site and proposed future park
– 5 Loaves Farm on DeWitt & West Delavan
– Community Beer Works, on the history of beer in Buffalo (and a tasting)!
– Other breweries: Bootleg Bucha and Resurgence Brewery.

Written by Mike Puma

Mike Puma

Writing for Buffalo Rising since 2009 covering development news, historic preservation, and Buffalo history. Works professionally in historic preservation.

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