“Buffalo Takes Community Places Grant Competition by Storm”

Anyone who has encouraged Buffalo’s revival and continued revival will be pleased to hear that three deserving organizations recently received funding from the Project for Public Spaces (PPS).

The three groups in line to receive these community place building grants are the Central Terminal Restoration Corporation (CTRC), Buffalo Heritage Carousel, and Buffalo Urban Development Corporation (BUDC). Each organization will make maximum use of the funding to create vibrant public spaces. Ultimately, PPS provides financial support, as well as project management expertise and technical assistance.

Funding and technical assistance opportunities were initially open to three different cities – Buffalo, New York; Nashville, TN; and Kansas City, Kansas – for their public spaces, although Buffalo managed to win all three awards. Each of the “priority cities” was considered in part because of its links to General Motors facilities (GM is a partner in Project for Public Spaces).

“Buffalo’s spirit of innovation is unmatched and the three prizes were donated to organizations in the Cité des Bons Neighbors.

“We are thrilled to partner with the community, General Motors and Project for Public Spaces for the early activation of the Great Lawn and to create a place that is welcoming, inviting and fun,” said CTRC General Manager Monica Pellegrino Faix. .

“The Buffalo Heritage Carousel is committed to creating hands-on, accessible educational experiences through play and the environment, and working with Project for Public Spaces and General Motors is a perfect mission for us, enabling community engagement in new and exciting,” said Carima El-Behairy, Director of Operations and Development.

“BUDC is thrilled to continue our place-making initiative, Buffalo’s Race for Place, with the support of Project for Public Spaces and our local partners,” said Brandye Merriweather, President of BUDC. “The Public Spaces Project’s Community Places Grants initiative will help us create a dynamic, accessible space that elevates the heart of our city and connects people in meaningful ways. »

Learn more about the three Buffalo projects on the Project for Public Spaces website here.


Before photo of the large lawn. Credit: Michelle Sutton, 2021.

Buffalo Central Terminal Project

Grant project for the creation of community places in public spaces The initiative will transform The large terminal lawn seen from below-designed, grassy lawn in a green space highly activated for the sharing of civic experiences. The CTRC will use a community-engaged design process to reinforce resident ownership and investment in the creation of the Great Lawn.

Over the past year, the CTRC has completed a community master plan that is the most comprehensive redevelopment framework ever created. A key pillar of this plan is the reactivation of the Terminal as the Civic Commons, a year-round regional venue for public events and activities. Early activation of the Great Lawn is the first step in Civic Commons’ commitment. Placemaking on the Great Lawn will create a welcoming entrance to Buffalo Central Terminal as a place for neighbors and visitors from near and far. The Great Lawn will develop much-needed recreational green space and strengthen the terminal’s physical connection to the wider Broadway-Fillmore neighborhood.

Image Credit: Buffalo Heritage Carousel

Buffalo Heritage Carousel Project

The Buffalo Heritage Carousel is located on the boardwalk at Canalside, while it is already a busy location, it currently has no seating or gathering spaces in its immediate vicinity. The Community Places Grant will allow the carousel to extend the experience from inside the building to the outdoors on its boardwalk, in all seasons, strengthening the community.

Before photo of ellicott street underpass. photo creditBUDC

Buffalo Urban Development Corporation Ellicott Street Underpass Project

Support of Project for public spaces will help build on Buffalo’s Race for Place and the Ellicott Street Placemaking Strategy, which sets out a simple design vision and principles, progressive streetscape strategies and public realm enhancements to enhance the public setting. Improvements promote better accessibility, attract and encourage continued investment and development, support talent attraction and retention, and add to the downtown core Buffalo’s quality of life for the diverse residents of Buffalo, empworshipers, visitors and the local business community. Our project Projet Espaces Publics, carried out in collaboration with the City the Buffalo Mayor’s Office of Strategic Planning; City of Buffalo Department of Public Works; GoBike Buffalo and Wendel Companies, seeks to use place-making elements such as paint, planters and lighting to transform the site into a dynamic space that provides safe pedestrian and cycle connections, promotes traffic calming and improves access to public transport.


the Grants for the creation of community places was developed to give more people the ability to shape the places they use every day. Launched in fall 2021, this initiative connects U.S.-based nonprofits and government agencies with funding to transform the public spaces they manage, as well as technical assistance and capacity building. capacities facilitated by Project for Public Spaces.

Founded in 1975, Project for public spaces has brought to life some of the most successful public places in the world. They place community involvement at the center of everything they do, from place-making partnerships with corporations and foundations to their workshops, trainings, conferences, and more. Their interdisciplinary team has helped over 3,500 communities in 52 countries create inclusive places that improve our society.

Dino J. Dotson