What does the public want on Buffalo's Outer Harbor?

Sep 12, 2018

Summer may be winding down - but planning continues moving forward for future improvements along Buffalo's Outer Harbor. A recent survey is being used by the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation to guide the agency's work on three projects.  

Map of areas that will see improvements.
Credit Erie Canal Harbor Development Corp.

About 300 people responded to the qualitative survey designed to gauge public opinion of the upgrades already made on the Outer Harbor - and to help plan new development. The survey was distributed at a public meeting, in July, and made available online for one month. ECHDC Vice President Steve Ranalli says the good thing is the survey shows everybody seems to be aligned on their vision for the Outer Harbor.  
    
"People are enjoying the open space today whether that's sitting out and watching a sunset or flying a kite taking it all in. People like to hike and walk and bike and those are really a lot of the ideas we had going in to the open house and really those were reaffirmed by the public."  

The survey will help plan work in and around the First Buffalo River Marina across from Canalside, the vacant Terminal B near Buffalo Harbor State Park, and Ranalli says, the large open space between Wilkeson Pointe and the Bell Slip.
    
"We really are talking about adding more trails, bathrooms, some food and beverage increase the amount of habitat restoration areas out there. Really a mix of active and passive recreational spaces for people to do things in. And just provide some basic amenities."   
 
The survey shows the public wants the Outer Harbor to be different from Canalside. And Ranalli says alternatives for the three projects will be presented during a second open house November 19. The location has not be decided.