Author: Mike Puma

Mike Puma

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

The Common Owner platform was created to connect real estate developers and businesses with investors in urban areas in order to create or restore economic productivity and a desirable sense of place. Access to capital is the largest barrier for new and small businesses and real estate developers, especially in small real estate markets like Buffalo. Common Owner facilitates access to capital for projects while also allowing investors to build new equity opportunities. Now everyone can profit from the real estate investments being made in their own community. The portal’s first investment opportunity (for accredited investors only at this time)…

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In light of the recent amendments proposed for the City’s Preservation Ordinance, Preservation Buffalo Niagara is proposing their own improvements to the legislature for more meaningful change. As stated on their EveryAction post, “Join Preservation Buffalo Niagara in advocating for Buffalo’s historic resources by updating the Preservation Ordinance to ensure that buildings cannot be significantly altered or demolished while landmark status is being determined. Unfortunately the proposed amendments are not the change we need. As written, it undermines the intent of the broader preservation ordinance and seeks to impose alternate landmarking criteria and timelines for some buildings.  Ultimately, we believe that this will result in less certainty…

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The widespread introduction of new transportation technology is coming and cities like Buffalo can start planning for its arrival now. Autonomous vehicles, advances in micro-mobility such as e-scooters, and dynamic parking pricing will all change the design of cities and how we move about them. The Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) is partnering with the City of Buffalo, the Buffalo Urban Renewal Agency (BURA), and national consulting firm Stantec Urban Places to explore how current and future land uses, including street design, can accommodate the mobility solutions of future decades, while at the same time providing a vibrant public…

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The City Beyond the Falls: Pop Up Art Show is a one night only event to take place on Friday, December 13, 6 to 11 pm, at 1902 Main Street in Niagara Falls, NY. The show will direct artists to spotlight the other half of Buffalo’s metropolitan area: Niagara Falls. Buffalo Obscura, a photography collaborative established in 2017, is partnering with LiveNF on a pop up event that will explore the places beyond the roar of the waterfall: the city itself. “Buffalo Obscura and LiveNF are tasking artists with interpreting the Niagara Falls of beauty and neglect, opportunities and challenges, and…

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The former Record Theatre building at Main Street and Lafayette Avenue sold this week for $375,000 to the Monroe Building LLC. Work is anticipated to begin by Spring of next year with completion following about a year later. The building will be returned to its original namesake, The Monroe Building as part of the project. The ownership group is comprised of Common Bond Real Estate (Jason Yots), Preservation Studios (Mike Puma & Derek King), Urban Vantage (Rich Rogers & Travis Gordon), and Buffalove Development (Bernice Radle). Plans for the redevelopment were announced earlier this year and several commercial tenants have…

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A couple nights ago, at the Buffalo Science Museum, about 75-100 community members heard from the NYSDOT about their concepts to address a small portion of the Kensington Expressway to return some lost connectivity on either side of the concrete canyon. The area of focus runs south of East Ferry Street to Best Street, beyond the original termination point of Humboldt Parkway. While an increase in the original Humboldt Parkway length was appreciated, pretty much nothing else about the proposal was getting strong support by the community.  The Restore Our Community Coalition (ROCC) has been the driving force behind finding…

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Rest in Power: Remember Casimer Mazurek, an event to recognize and honor the nearly forgotten war hero and labor martyr killed by Lackawanna Steel Company police during the Great Steel Strike of 1919, will take place on Monday. The event will mark the 100 year anniversary of Mazurek’s killing on September 23, 1919. Casimer Mazurek Gravesite Division 15, Holy Cross Cemetery Lackawanna, NY Monday, September 23, 5:30-6:30 pm “Casimer Mazurek is perhaps Buffalo’s greatest symbol of the sacrifices made to secure dignity for the working class through the labor movement,” says Chris Hawley of the Eugene V. Debs Local Initiative.…

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The development group behind the reactivation of the former Record Theatre complex at 1786 Main Street in Buffalo announced today the signing of its first group of commercial tenants. The group, which is led by Jason Yots of Common Bond Real Estate, plans to convert the former Record Theatre complex into a mixed-use project known as The Monroe that will include market-rate apartments, offices and retail spaces. Following several months of leasing activities, the group announced today that the following tenants have signed-on to occupy over half of the available commercial space in the project: GoBike Buffalo and Reddy Bikeshare…

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Buffalo is well-known for its pedal pubs – the bar-hopping bikes found all over downtown – but there’s a new way to truly learn about the history of the city’s brewing past – and on two wheels. Chris Hawley, urbanist and history buff, and Seamus Gallivan, founder of Buffalo’s Slow Roll Bike Ride, are teaming up with Buffalo Bike Tours to offer a special tour celebrating the East Side’s brewing and bar history. The bike tour will visit three breweries and three bars, exploring the history and communities in which these landmarks reside. What: Chris & Seamus’ Excellent East Side…

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The Milk-Bone District is among the most recognizable, least understood industrial centers of the Buffalo Belt Line. Chris Hawley, urbanist and history buff, will give what is believed to be the first ever historical walking tour of the Milk-Bone District on Saturday, May 4, 1 pm, starting at The Guild @ 980, 980 Northampton Street.  Interestingly, word on the street is the Wonder Bread plant is under contract to a known developer. “I’m tentatively calling the Belt Line industrial center around Fougeron Street the ‘Milk Bone District,’” says Hawley. “This is half in jest, but I think it sounds pretty…

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