Planning for Economic Development

Mayor Byron W. Brown frequently hears from citizens that their number one concern is jobs.

The Buffalo Green Code will act as the foundation for the Mayor’s place-based economic development strategy. In this global and knowledge-intensive economy, place quality is a key element for creating jobs, attracting a talented workforce, and growing the tax base. By building on our inherent assets, we will be better able to grow our 21st Century economy.

Buffalo continues to make a long-term transition from an economy heavily invested in manufacturing to a more diversified economy – with a manufacturing presence, but with a shift in emphasis to higher education, health care, professional services, high-technology including advanced manufacturing, and other knowledge-based industries.

The Buffalo Green Code will target land, locations, and infrastructure to support this continuing economic transition, implementing the overall strategy outlined in Queen City in the 21st Century: Buffalo’s Comprehensive Plan. Core policies will drive an array of actions, some of which will be implemented through the new future development plan and zoning ordinance. Core principles being considered are:
placemaking Focus on placemaking, in order to enhance the quality of life of our residents and attract the highly mobile workers of the 21st Century, by building on our traditional urban mixed-use neighborhoods and rich array of heritage assets.
transform Transform buildings across the city for the “new economy” by facilitating the reuse of old industrial space for light industry, office, and warehousing space for emerging companies and incubator tenants (e.g., Larkin District).
advance Advance Downtown as a vibrant regional center for commerce, culture and entertainment, health care and education by promoting the development of new mixed-use office space to meet contemporary needs, facilitating the transformation of obsolete office space into a range of residential options, and continuing to invest in improvements in the public realm Downtown.
knowledge_community Integrate our knowledge economy into the neighborhoods by weaving educational and health-care investments in districts like the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus into surrounding neighborhoods and connecting them with other City neighborhoods with existing light rail and bus corridors.
brownfields Reclaim “brownfields” in established industrial corridors, in appropriate waterfront locations, and in locations served by rail and highway infrastructure for use in growing Buffalo’s economy.
canada Capitalize on Canada-US trade by siting bi-national logistics and distribution facilities in appropriate locations and by capturing new traffic patterns for neighborhood business.
keep_dollars Keep dollars in neighborhoods and Buffalo by promoting retail redevelopment and local entrepreneurship in our walkable neighborhood centers.

What do you think? These are just some of the highlights of the economic development strategy to be implemented in part through the Buffalo Green Code. There are other important elements. But as a basic approach, does this make sense to you? What would you change? What parts do you think are the best? What would you add? Write to us at info@buffalogreencode.com.