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City of Buffalo Press Releases

Posted on: January 10, 2019

Mayor Brown Urges Residents To Take Part In The Next Phase Of The‘Imagine Lasalle’ Project

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BUFFALO, NY – Mayor Byron W. Brown today urged City of Buffalo residents to take part in a series of upcoming public workshops on the transformation of Buffalo’s LaSalle Park into Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Centennial Park. The first workshop will be held on January 17, 2018, from 6-8 p.m., at International Preparatory School, 110 14th Street, on Buffalo’s West Side.

The January 17th session kicks off the conceptual design phase of the on-going park redesign effort, which received a tremendous boost in October 2018 from a $50 million gift from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation.

“Last October’s funding announcement from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation was a game-changer for the Imagine LaSalle initiative. From day one, this has been a redesign effort fueled by public input, and that will continue,” Mayor Brown said. “In this next round of public workshops, our residents will be voicing their views and suggestions directly to the design team from Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA), the highly-regarded landscape architecture firm which will lead the effort to create world-class waterfront park for the enjoyment of City residents, and will attract people to Buffalo from across the nation, and around the globe.”

MVVA will return to Buffalo for additional public workshops in February and March. Each month, the design team will present updated concepts that have been revised based on input from previous meetings and offer a chance for the community to share additional feedback. The workshop, facilitated by the UB School of Architecture and Planning and the UB Regional Institute (UBRI), will offer an opportunity for the community to directly discuss recommendations and ideas for the  park, which were gleaned from earlier public input sessions, interviews and an on-lined survey, directly with the MVVA team.

To kick off the meeting, UBRI will summarize the engagement work that went into creating the community’s vision for the park over the summer of 2018. MVVA will provide an overview of the conceptual design process and landscape architecture principles that guide their work. Attendees will also hear MVVA’s analysis of existing conditions and design opportunities in the park. During the community workshop portion of the meeting, community members will move between display stations arranged by design theme, such as connectivity, water access, athletic recreation, and others. The public is encouraged to review design concepts, talk about ideas with team members, and share written input at each station. 

“Community engagement has driven the LaSalle Park redesign effort from its inception, and it’s critical that Buffalo residents and other community stakeholders continue their involvement as this exciting project moves forward. This is an opportunity for your voice to be heard on a project that will bring great enjoyment for you, your families and friends, and generations to come,” Mayor Brown said. In late spring 2019, MVVA will return to Buffalo with a conceptual design, including renderings and a large physical model which will go on public display after the design presentation. After the conceptual design phase is complete, designers will begin schematic design in preparation for construction.

Registration prior to the event is highly encouraged. To register and to learn more about Imagine LaSalle and the conceptual design process, visit ImagineLaSalle.org.

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