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BOPC Statement on Today’s announcement by NYSDOT Region 5 Director, Frank Cirillo, Regarding the Scajaquada Expressway

By January 8, 2018 No Comments

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact: Therese Fuerst, Fuerst Consulting Corp., 716.200.3593

“Today we can say clearly that the community has been heard. Thanks to the effort of so many concerned citizens who worked so hard over these past several months, we now have an opportunity to restore the jewel of Olmsted’s system,” stated Stephanie Crockatt, Executive Director of the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy. “On behalf of the Conservancy, I want to express our gratitude to local elected leaders and community partners who fought with us to help save Delaware Park, and to Governor Cuomo and his administration for agreeing to work with the community. This is about building a new, revitalized Buffalo, and we look forward to working closely with the NYS DOT and the regional office to develop a visionary plan that will do justice to Olmsted’s legacy.  Today’s announcement caps months of work by members of the community who mobilized as part of the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy’s multifaceted #SaveDelawarePark campaign.”

In all, the #SaveDelawarePark campaign includes:

  • In just two months, more than 5,000 people signed a petition to Save Delaware Park: Restore Olmsted’s Legacy.
  • The New York Times highlighted the effort to restore the Scajaquada Corridor.
  • Development of a social media toolkit to help amplify effort online was distributed to supporters that included an action card of suggested tweets, Facebook posts, and phone numbers for key elected officials.
  • Over one hundred people attended a Rally to Save Delaware Park.
  • More than 100 residents from Buffalo’s East Side attended a community forum hosted by the Restore Our Community Coalition.
  • Supporters were out in force at the Sone Arch Bridge on Thanksgiving at the YMCA Turkey Trot with lawn signs, banners and t-shirts, accompanied by a drum circle
  • A small business owner action group met to discuss the positive impact a reunified park would have on their businesses.
  • Public visibility efforts featuring bright orange lawn signs, t-shirts, and posters have been popping up all over Buffalo calling for the Governor’s help to Save Delaware Park.
  • A promoted Twitter campaign featuring tweets highlighting the petition, the NY Times article, and a specific call to @NYGovCuomo and @NYSDOT was seen 55,374 times (total impressions) by targeted users in Buffalo and Albany.
  • BOPC has been working to energize the base by attending community and block club meetings. Key community engagement meetings included: Garrett Club members, Parkside Community Assoc; Preservation Buffalo Niagara – Annual Meeting; Nottingham Neighbors – Elmwood to Delaware; Hamlin Park Taxpayers; VisionNiagara; Young Preservationists; Rumsey Neighbors; Saturn Club members.
  • The BOPC Chairman and Executive Director wrote an opinion piece in the Buffalo News in addition to letters to the editor for the Restore Our Community Coalition and Go Bike Buffalo.
  • Presentation to the Buffalo Common Council following the passage of a resolution on 11/28 supporting our efforts.

For more information on the #SaveDelawarePark Campaign, please visit bfloparks.org/198.

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About the #SaveDelawarePark campaign:
A grassroots effort, led by the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy, the #SaveDelawarePark campaign is designed to convince the NYS Department of Transportation to join with the community on a comprehensive approach that will reunite the park and reconnect the community, improve accessibility through safe complete streets, and enhance the economic vitality of this corridor for our City.

About the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy:
The Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy is the first nonprofit organization in the nation to manage and operate an entire urban park system that consists of 850 acres of beautifully designed historic parks, parkways and circles. The Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy is a not-for-profit, membership-based, community organization whose mission is to promote, preserve, restore, enhance, and maintain the Frederick Law Olmsted-designed parks and parkways in the Greater Buffalo area for current and future generations. More than 2.5 million people use Buffalo’s historic, award-winning Olmsted Park system annually for recreation, relaxation and rejuvenation. The parks were designed by America’s first landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted more than 148 years ago. Basic maintenance of the parks has been greatly improved since the 2004 groundbreaking public-private agreement with the City of Buffalo and Erie County. Since that time, the Olmsted Parks Conservancy, now partnering with the City of Buffalo, has retained full responsibility for the management and care of these green spaces which are listed on the National and State Registers of Historic Places. Most recently, the American Planning Association recognized Delaware Park as one of the 2014 Great Places in America and The Guardian named the Olmsted park system as one of the best park systems in the world. bfloparks.wpengine.com

The Buffalo Olmsted Park System includes: 

Six parks: Cazenovia Park in South Buffalo, Delaware Park in Delaware/Parkside District, Front Park at the Peace Bridge, Martin Luther King, Jr. Park at Fillmore Avenue, Riverside Park at Niagara and Tonawanda Street, and South Park at McKinley Parkway

Seven parkways: Bidwell, Chapin, Lincoln, McKinley, Porter, Red Jacket, and Richmond

Eight landscaped traffic circles: Agassiz, Colonial, Ferry, Gates, McClellan, McKinley, Soldiers, and Symphony