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Northeast Community Workshop

University Heights,
Kensington Heights,


Assets: Mixed-use nature of Bailey Avenue; historic and architecturally significant buildings; community gardens; McCarthy Park; neighborhood businesses - ABC Hardware, Asian Seafood Market, Gerwitz Hardware.

Strengths: Strong block clubs - Minnesota/Comstock; new housing on William Pierce Pkwy; clusters of stable housing - Highgate, Lisbon, etc.; Great potential for Bailey Avenue to be a mixed-use walkable business district; good corner stores can be assets to neighborhood.

Weaknesses: Industrial uses not compatible with residential, vacant housing and storefronts; streetscape and pedestrian/bicycle facilities in major disrepair; unsightliness of the 33; Green space needs better maintenance; drugs and crime; poor street lighting.

New directions: Urban grocery needed to serve the neighborhood; utilize vacant lots for pocket parks; improve aesthetics and mixed-use nature of business districts - Bailey and Kensington; urban retail center at Central Park Plaza; design standards for new builds; parking behind businesses; rehab existing structures for use by community.

University Heights

Assets: Major employers - UB and VA hospital; golf course as major open/green space; Metro stations provide multimodal transportation; local churches; diverse and unique businesses draw people to neighborhood - Shango's, Parkside Candy, Talking Leaves, etc.; bike path and greenway along old rail corridor.

Strengths: Diverse and historic housing stock with great potential; mixed-use nature of Main Street; access to green space/nature - linear park; adaptive reuse of vacant structures (Bethune Hall); blocks of high owner-occupancy - strong community; walkable and easy access to public transit .

Weaknesses: Vacant residential and commercial properties; absentee landlords; too many poorly maintained rentals/doubles; Kenmore Avenue too auto-centric; bars and drinking; increase in crime.

New directions: Maintain walkability and improve aesthetics of Main Street; mixed-use and streetscaping for Kenmore Avenue maintain and encourage density; increase housing options (seniors); convert rail corridor to permanent green space/park/bike path; pocket parks; integrate new urban infill housing with old; utilize transit.

Kensington Heights

Assets: Historic and iconic buildings (e.g. Uptown Theater); local businesses; diversity; access to public transportation; commercial districts - Bailey, Kensington, Eggert; Roosevelt and McCarthy Parks; local schools and community centers; tight-knit blocks/sense of community.Â

Strengths: Strong and diverse housing stock; easy access to services - walkable; churches, schools, and community centers provide stability; properties maintained and values stable (Martha/Phyllis); owner-occupied and multigenerational.

Weaknesses: Vacant homes and businesses; drugs; increase in crimes; dangerous traffic conditions - Kensington and Eggert; public housing; vandalism and poorly maintained properties; Bailey Avenue needs more mixed-use development.

New directions: Larger lot residential by demolishing vacant structures; more local and community green space; Bailey more mixed use with improved streetscape - storefronts, awnings, trees, lighting (like Elmwood or Hertel); businesses that serve residents.


Assets: Anchor institutions - Canisius College, Sister's Hospital, Trinity Church; local schools; Wakefield community garden; parks and public pool.

Strengths: Manhattan Park has potential for better development; Victoria Street rehab.

Weaknesses: Weak development along Main Street; Vacant lots and vandalism along Jewitt and Rodney; vacant businesses, homes, and lots; streets and sidewalks in poor condition; Underdeveloped - Bennett Village and Liberty Street.

New directions: Fillmore and Main Street more mixed-use and walkable; medium lot residential infill between Fillmore and Richlawn; community gardens/green space spread throughout; reuse Central Park Plaza as auto-oriented business center.