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City of Buffalo Press Releases

Posted on: September 28, 2018

Mayor Brown Hosts Mural Wall Dedication Ceremony At New Northland Workforce Training Center

Northland Mural

Buffalo, NY – The Northland Workforce Training Center, a new facility dedicated to providing training, internships, apprenticeships and permanent employment for City of Buffalo residents seeking high-paying and family sustaining careers, is now the home of a 40 ft. by 17 ft. decorative pattern wall, constructed by Society for the Advancement of Construction Related Arts (SACRA) students. Mayor Brown joined SACRA students and many other elected officials and dignitaries at a special dedication ceremony for ‘The Northland Pattern Wall: City of Past and Future Craft’.


“This is an amazing mural for the Northland Workforce Training Center, created by our City’s young people, and a great complement to a much larger project that will soon result in the positive transformation of this East Side

neighborhood,’” said Mayor Brown, Chair of the Buffalo Urban Development Corporation. “I thank Governor Andrew Cuomo for his strong support of this game-changing project along the Northland Corridor as we continue to work together to transform the entire 35 acre site into a vibrant campus – the next step in continuing toward a better, stronger, more vibrant City.”


Howard Zemsky, President, CEO and Commissioner of Empire State Development said, “This magnificent mural is ideal for Northland because it was created with old tool-making components found at the former manufacturing site and will welcome the students who represent manufacturing’s future.”


The Northland Pattern Wall combines wood components crafted by SACRA students with the original wood pattern molds from the former Niagara Machine and Tool Works, the site of the wall’s installation. The project offers a meditation on the past and future of skilled labor in Buffalo, while producing an imaginary map of the city. The mural project was coordinated by Assembly House 150/SACRA, under the direction of Dennis Maher.


Dennis Maher, Assembly House 150/ Society for the Advancement of Construction Related Arts (SACRA) stated, “The most enjoyable part of this experience was seeing students engaged and proud of their work. It has been so rewarding seeing them use designed artifacts and historic wooden patterns to construct an exciting imaginary cityscape that celebrates and re-imagines Buffalo’s legacy of craftsmanship while projecting toward its future through a new generation of builders and dreamers.”


Students took part in a 15-week career training program and learned valuable skills in carpentry and woodworking. The completed mural was celebrated at a special dedication ceremony at the Northland WTC. The training facility opened in August; the first training class began in early September.

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