Author: T. A. Marciano

T. A. Marciano

www.tracymarciano.com

The world is complex. This weekend it became clear that the complexity of hate changed American history. The trajectory of our narrative, as a country of more than 300 million people, changed dramatically and the world is taking notice. The freedoms this country offers far surpass most of the other 195 counties on the planet. The situation in Orlando was not only tragic for the United States, it was a setback for the LGBT global community and other diverse populations trying to find solid footing in an unstable world. Narrowing the focus to Buffalo, the cultural capital of this city…

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The city of Buffalo does spectacular things with gardens, especially in small urban yards. Our ubiquitous gardens have put us on the map as the largest garden walk in the country and also been the inspiration for gardening books and articles. We are graced with the historic Olmsted Parkway System from the 1800’s which serves as host to some of our greatest cultural landscape assets. Gardens in this city do great job, but sometimes it can inspirational to see how others are interpreting the same medium. This article is to share some of the amazing things other people and cities…

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The preservation movement across the country is primarily focused on restoring residential architecture and post industrial buildings. With the arrival of the STR Columbia in Buffalo (September 2015), the city has an opportunity to learn about a unique variation of historic restoration and cultural preservation. The restoration project, with an objective of returning the boat to full operation, is shifting the paradigm toward a renewed appreciation of the vibrant maritime social history in the United States. It also offers an opportunity to understand how architectural styles were influenced by and/or reacted to social climates. Maritime design on land would emerge…

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On March 20, 2016 green bagels intended for St. Patrick’s Day were spotted in a dumpster a few blocks north of Elmwood Village. Brooklyn has Rainbow Bagels™ and can’t make enough to keep up with demand (800+ per day). Buffalo has green bagels and can’t sell enough. A call to the business verified they made too many this year. They gave them away to customers but didn’t know what else to do with them at the end of the weekend other than throw them out. For years Buffalo has remained in the third or fourth spot on the unfortunate list of…

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Nostalgia for trains and train travel seems to remain constant in a world where very little, if anything, can be preserved in perpetuity. The fundamental principle of railroads has remained the same for almost 200 years: trains, steel tracks, stations, tickets and passengers/cargo. Aside from engineering, one of the most significant changes over the years is the architecture of stations. In the early 1800’s rail stations were small and utilitarian. A notable design element in two images is the ornamental roof cresting and pinnacles. America hadn’t found its own architectural identity at that point and was leaning on the knowledge…

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The University Heights Arts Association is launching a terrific program that offers free access to art in public locations. It will launch in the Buffalo on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 at West-Herr Toyota Scion of Williamsville. The project combines art and learning with a mission of increasing accessibility to art which is often limited by financial constraints, especially in underserved populations. The ARTcovz project places booths stocked with single art lessons along with supplies around Western New York such as community centers, homeless shelters, waiting rooms, schools, and parks. ARTcovz is part of the ARTboothz program of the University Heights Arts…

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Looking at the image above (circa 1907-1915), the monument and 96 foot obelisk are recognizable but not much else is if using surrounding architecture as a point of reference. In addition to being a Presidential monument for McKinley, Niagara Square was also designed to as a public space with its grand walkways, spacious benches, exquisitely carved Vermont marble and fountains. The sleeping lions, symbols of strength, and the turtles, emblematic of eternal life, have become subdued with erosion over the years and have a resemblance to melted wax in some areas. The erosion has contributed a sense of fortitude with…

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Compared to the casual experience in the many restaurants, dining was a formal affair at the turn of the century. Vintage menus offer insight about how much our meal preferences have changed over the last century. A side order of chow chow was 15 cents. The dish is a North American pickled relish made from a combination of vegetables including green tomato, cabbage, chayote, red tomatoes, onions, carrots, beans, asparagus, cauliflower and peas. This may have been slowly replaced by other relishes followed by chutneys that appear on contemporary menus. Whealets, chipped beef in cream and boiled salmon have all slipped from current…

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With the upswing of activity in Buffalo and more access to the waterfront on the horizon, the city is has an opportunity to explore creativity and unique design concepts. Winter events such as the Slow Roll, ice bikes at Canalside, Labatt Pond Hockey, the Ice Festival in Larkinville among others are proving that winter weather that made this city famous doesn’t stop a city from being outside. In a recent design competition hosted by Winter Stations, the introduction appears to describe Buffalo but it was for another city in close proximity. … winters are long and unpredictable. They consist of…

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