Wow!! I am shocked, excited and honored that Kaid Benfield wanted to write about what we are doing here in Buffalo. My heart exploded when I saw this article in the Atlantic Cities blog. Coming from an urban planner – this blog is the mecca of planning/urbanism & cities. I literally read it every morning.
“BuffaLove Development aims to bring together elements of historic preservation and sustainability into each project through the use of good materials, design and community direction. We are taking a comprehensive approach to our neighborhood by investing in three areas – vacant lots, singles and doubles, and mixed use anchor buildings. We know that with a comprehensive approach, we will inspire growth, create jobs and strengthen our neighborhood … Our vision is to rehab each building in a fashion that mixes preservation and energy efficiency while maintaining affordability and comfort.”
“Green’s article for the Times suggests that what BuffaLove is doing is part of a trend of microdevelopment, at least in Buffalo, citing several additional individuals and companies doing preservation-and-rehab on a small scale, but reaching critical mass when aggregated. “Just coming out of the woodwork,” was the way one seasoned developer put it to Green. That sounds fantastic to me – this is an approach, and a philosophy, well worth rooting for.”
This post originally appeared on the NRDC’s Switchboard blog, an Atlantic partner site.
Kaid Benfield is special counsel for urban solutions at the Natural Resources Defense Council, an adjunct professor at the George Washington University School of Law, co-founder of the LEED for Neighborhood Development rating system, and author of several books on cities, smart growth and sprawl. All posts »
On Thursday night (11/7/2013) while we were celebrating our NYTimes article with our family and friends, Jason popped the question and I said yes! (Of course!) The 1930 Art Deco ring is absolutely perfect, too!
We have no idea when the wedding date is… but stay tuned for details! It will be a giant party, that’s for sure!
Jason and I are truly a perfect pair. We are excited for a long life of happiness and devotion. ❤
P.s. Here are our recent “post engagement” photos – the 1930’s art deco engagement ring, the first engagement photo (photo credit: Chris Hawley!) and a nice pic during a walk through Arlington park.
From the NYTimes article: ”Passionate and preservation-minded, Ms. Radle and Mr. Wilson both have degrees in urban planning and are emblematic of a particular wave of development here. Buying on a small scale, they and their peers are perhaps best described as microdevelopers, rehabbing derelict properties to rent and perhaps eventually sell in an attempt to save houses from demolition and preserve a neighborhood or two. In so doing, they are attempting to shore up the city’s long, slow decline since the population and jobs began leaking away more than a half-century ago.”
Thank you to Penelope Green for taking a day to listen to us, hang out, go to the auction! This is such a great article for Buffalo’s “post industrial” image. Photo credit: Tony, a lovable NYTimes photographer from Newburg.
I compiled four photos for 351 Massachusetts Avenue to show the progress!
My heart melted this morning when I saw it nearing completion… this vacant house has come so far. Jason and I really thought it was a goner. Anyone else would have given up, I am sure of it. This photo does not show the giant ice sheets we found from frozen pipes, the crazy mushrooms due to moisture, the rebuilding of the foundation in three areas, the new roof, the interior gut and the clapboard work that was completed… This little snapshot doesn’t give me enough space to summarize how far this little single family house has come along.
Here are the photo details:
Top Left: Oct. 2012 – The day we purchased both houses (347 & 351) at the In Rem foreclosure Auction. 351 was vacant, 347 was occupied. The beginning of Buffalove!
Top Right: April 2013 – Mark & Jason tore out the chain link fence.. and donated it to Wildroot, of course! (We didn’t get the deeds until March 2013!)
Bottom Left: Oct. 2013 – After all the foundation & roof work is complete – PAINT!
Bottom Right: Nov. 2013 – Exterior Paint is finished!! Window replacement is next on deck!
So what is in store for this West Side home? Our goal is to finish it by Spring 2014. We will restore the few historic elements left and install high efficiency systems to bring together preservation and energy efficiency! We will most likely rent it for at least a few years however, we are open to all options, if the right opportunity comes along. Our overall goal is to help stabilize and grow the neighborhood by providing an affordable, sustainable and beautifully designed product. To keep up to date on the progress, follow us on facebook or online on our website http://www.buffalovedevelopment.com