Reviving Central Terminal will spur East Side’s rebirth
The discussions surrounding the decision on where to place the new train terminal in Buffalo got me thinking where we have been and where we are going. The renaissance of downtown Buffalo can clearly be traced to the late Mayor Jimmy Griffin’s vision and commitment to revitalizing the theater and waterfront districts. The construction of a new hotel, Erie Basin Marina and adjacent upscale housing was the beginning of a new era of prosperity for downtown.
At about the same time these positive things were going on, the old Central Terminal on the city’s East Side closed its doors. A local developer then bought the property in hopes of turning it into a mixed-use commercial and residential property. This valiant developer sought out the financial assistance and advantages that were being offered to the developers of the downtown plans but was spurned by the federal, state and local agencies that oversaw the distribution of funds and programs for such projects. After all, there was only so much money to go around and besides, the Central Terminal neighborhood was still a thriving community with stores and businesses along Broadway and surrounding areas.
Fast forward nearly 40 years and we see an amazing downtown that has become a tourist destination that’s getting better each year. But what of the neighborhoods on the East Side? Now is the time for the mayor to use his influence over the powers that be to invest and make a commitment for the rebirth and reincarnation of the Broadway-Fillmore and other neglected neighborhoods. That rebirth begins with placing Buffalo’s new train station at a newly refurbished and renovated Central Terminal on Paderewski Drive!