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November 2011

Susan McCartney Receives 'Preservationist of Century Award.' Esmonde, Franczyk, Healy, Zemsky, Wendt Foundation also honored


The Campaign for Greater Buffalo History, Architecture & Culture, whose members have been at the forefront of historic preservation in Buffalo for 25 years, honored Susan McCartney as the Buffalo “Preservationist of the Century”  at the Buffalo Preservation Awards on October 18, 2011.
McCartney was recognized as the founder of the popular preservation movement in Buffalo. She played the leading role in saving the Connecticut St. Armory, the New York Telephone Building, the Genessee Building, St. Mary of Sorrows Church, the Allendale Theater, the Great Northern grain elevator,  the Plymouth Methodist Church, and more. In addition, she led the efforts to designate numerous structures and historic districts as local landmarks. These include the Joseph Ellicott and Hamlin Park historic districts, St. Vincent’s Orphan Asylum,  and the Buffalo Savings Bank building.

Bflo Preservation Awards 2011 
Left to right, Buffalo Preservation Award honorees for Lifetime Achievement Howard Zemsky, Donn Esmonde, Susan McCartney, Ed Healy, and David Franczyk. The Margaret L. Wendt Foundation also received an award at The Campaign for Greater Buffalo ceremony.

Also recognized at the event for impact on historic preservation in Buffalo were columnist Donn Esmonde of the Buffalo News (Lifetime Award for Public Commentary); Fillmore District Council member and Buffalo Common Council President David Franczyk (Grover Cleveland Award for Lifetime Public Service); Edward Healy of Visit Buffalo Niagara (Lifetime Award for National Civic Promotion); the Margaret Wendt Foundation (Lifetime Award for Philanthropy); and Howard Zemsky, president of the Richard-Olmsted Corporation, past president of the Martin House Restoration Corporation, and developer of the Larkin District (William Dorsheimer Award for Civic Leadership).
The honorees received framed Maxwell Tielman photographs of the landmarks they helped save save or promote. McCartney received an image of the Connecticut Armory, Esmonde a picture of the Commercial Slip in the Canal District, Healy a print of the Great Northern Grain Elevator, Zemsky a picture of H.H. Richardson's Buffalo State Hospital, Franczyk a photograph of the concourse of the Central Terminal, and the Wendt Foundation a detail of St. Mary of Sorrows church, now the King Urban Life Center.
The event was held on the eve of the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s annual meeting in Buffalo. The headquarters hotel of the National Trust, the Hyatt, was saved from demolition by McCartney and company. Developer Paul Snyder had originally wanted to demolish the Genesee Building for a new hotel, but, after a landmarking- and community-organizing campaign led by McCartney, was persuaded to do the largest adaptive reuse project effort yet undertaken in Buffalo. He even named the hotel's steakhouse after the building's architect, E. B. Green.
The awards were presented before a packed house at the Western New York Book Arts Center at Washington and Mohawk streets.


City to present Draft of New Land Use Plan

On Saturday at ECC City Campus (9am - 3pm) the City of Buffalo is revealing the draft of its new land use plan. Public input is being sought. There is a good framework for enhancement of neighborhoods through historic preservation and infill. But there is always room for improvement! 

This plan hopes to advance a policy of walkable, dense, mixed-use neighborhoods, contrary to the suburban-style, 1953 zoning code the city is operating under. It is hoped that this land use code will influence the effort to rewrite the superannuated zoning code. The new plan will make it easier to maintain and enhance Buffalo's traditional urban fabric when new development occurs

If you miss Saturday's event, you can download the draft plan and send in comments until the end of November.


Tielman tells National Trust Audience 'What it Means to be a Preservationist,' Hawley & Radle do a Duet on Hope

Campaign for Greater Buffalo executive director Tim Tielman told a packed house at the Market Arcade Theater what beign a preservationist means to The Campaign. Tielman introduced a segment of the documentary film Buffalo Unscripted, created for the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The movie had its premier on Friday, Oct. 21. Campaign board members Chris Hawley and Bernice Radle closed the show with a meditation on hope. You can check out the movie info here:

Tielman said, "Let me tell you what preservation means to us at the Campaign. Preservation implies action. Not merely celebrating those things of the past that have managed to survive, but actively working to make sure worthy buildings, parks, and neighborhoods do survive. 

"Preservation implies a willingness for front-line action when behind-the-scenes discussion isn't working. a willingness for the drudgery of research to uncover the story — that is surely there—that attests to worthiness of our action. 

"Preservation is a willingness to bring forth alternatives to destruction grounded in common sense, cultural respect, and value to our community— to do the public good. 

"Preservation is endurance. To fight vigorously, to tirelessly inform, to endlessly educate, to cajole, and when necessary, confront. Because, serendipity happens. The faded house and foresaken building may be so today, but with compassion, care, and understanding, they can shine tomorrow. In order to shine tomorrow, they must be saved today.

"Preservation is the knowledge that we are all in the same boat. We'd rather that boat be a well crafted sail boat or canal boat. Or an arc, with a place for everyone and everything, a bit cluttered and bearing the marks and character of time, but ever bobbing on the surface, calm or rough, being able to breathe fresh Cheerios-scented air. Not a sleek, cold, climate-controlled nuclear-powered submarine headed to the bottom.

"Lastly, to be a preservationist is to demand a role in creating the rooted, nurturing, sustainable history, architecture, and culture of tomorrow. To insure that our city does not have its humanity sacrificed to the machine, the whims of fashion, and maximum return on minimal investment. To fight to insure that our city reflects the warmth, depth, complexity and contradiction of us, it’s citizens."


Recognition for Campaign for Greater Buffalo co-founders

Donn Esmonde of the Buffalo News wrote an informative column on the achievements Campain for Greater Buffalo co-founders Susan Mccartney and Tim Tielman on the occassion of The National Trust for Historic Preservation convention in Buffalo. Worthwhile for the record and to pass on!

This week is a HUGE week for us. We have two events happening!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011 from 7 - 9 pm, we are having an awards recognition ceremony at the WNY Book Arts Center. We will be recognizing several key people that have helped to preserve Buffalo.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011 from 9pm - 12am, we are having the Party for the Preservation Generation! The tickets are 10 dollars at the door. We are showing a sneak preview of a few films from John Paget, one is about Seaside, the new urbanist project and features the famous Andres Duany!

The party will be so much fun. We have DJ Apex Hunter lined up, snacks and the movies. It will be a great way to celebrate all of Buffalo's uniqueness.

Preservation generation