School of Architecture and Planning

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The Idea of Heritage Development

Executive summary

Buffalo's Opportunity

The Economics of Heritage Development

Urban Design and Heritage Development

Exhibit of Historic Views

Heritage Development
- a Case Study

Group Discussion Sessions

A Summary of the Conversation

Content Analysis
(coming soon)


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Community building then, is what heritage development is all about and it brings in a lot of new players. Five years ago, can you imagine us gathered together to tell our municipal leaders and our state leaders that we want to be part of the conversation? We want to have some input into what goes on? And Iíve got to say, in my experience, New York State agencies are listening. They are not up there making decisions out of context with what we who live here want. So, I would give them the benefit of the doubt because the people that Iíve worked with in the State are hard-working individuals who want what is best for our communities to grow in a healthy direction.

So, weíve talked a little bit about context that Buffalo is part of a system. Weíve talked about community icons and how important they are. We need to talk about impacts. What you do here in Buffalo is going to influence what is going to happen to my Mohawk Valley. Itís going to influence what happens in New York City when the people there send folks up the Hudson and out the Erie Canal. What you are doing and what you are about here has significance far beyond your own community because it has the potential to draw in new visitors who come to see your beautiful new waterfront.

When we were on the Edward Cotter yesterday, I was really impressed with all those apartment buildings. I donít know what was there before. Probably grain elevators? Does anybody know? Grain elevators were there? Can you imagine the workers in that space thinking that in the next generation people were going to pay mega-bucks to live right there on that waterfront? But thatís whatís happening all over the United States with our waterfronts. And there is a way to sensitively develop it while nurturing and stewarding the resources that made us who we are today.

You have a real place here. It ties in with a lot of other real places in New York State. There are real stories and your story here is connected to stories all over the world of people who came through here, of inventions that grew from Buffalo. You have the potential for increased renewal and economic growth. Thatís what heritage development is all about: sensitive stewardship, protection, and enrichment for the future, for the young folks in the audience who need to take up the banner after weíre long gone. Thank you very much. (applause)

John B. Sheffer, II

Thank you Karen. Our second panelist is Mr. Tom Gallaher, Jr. As a private consultant in heritage development, Mr. Gallaher is a team-member facilitating heritage preservation and resource conservation partnerships in five states. Current clients include the Alabama Historical Commission, Economics Research Associates in Washington, D.C., Economic Stewardship, Inc. in Chicago, Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism and Mary Means and Associates of Alexandria, Virginia.

As one of four partners in Community Corridors, LLC, Mr. Gallaher is helping advance a non-profit/ for-profit partnership strategy for growth management, conservation and revitalization in a corridor linking downtown Asheville and the University of North Carolina- Asheville at Interstate 26. Community Corridors may become a strategic model for next steps in regional heritage development and urban growth management.

He was also senior consultant to the Alliance of National Heritage Areas (ANHA), where he partnered with the Institute for Conservation Leadership to develop an organizational framework for ANHA that balances and advances the Allianceís programs, Commercial Slip filled in, 1936 - WNY Heritage Institute Collectionresources and people. He also served as the senior advisor to the Alliance. With over ten years of experience, he excelled as Executive Director of Americaís Agricultural Heritage Partnership and directed completion of ANHAís partnership management plan with over 50 regional leaders working in three task forces to produce the management plan in six months. Join me in welcoming Tom Gallaher, Jr. (applause).

What is heritage development? (back to the top)

Tom Gallaher, Jr.: Principal, Community Corridors, LLC

Thank you John, and thank you Karen, and thank you Kevin, and thank everybody for this magnificent conversation that weíre having here. It is so wonderful to have seen the group last night and to see all of you here this morning. This is a remarkable event.

Now, I had some very wonderful comments prepared to give to you this morning and I left them in my hotel room last night and when I came down to dinner, Kevin gave my speech. So, I donít know what to do at this point. He did such a wonderful job with my notes.

There are terms like cultural heritage tourism and heritage tourism. Karen, thank you very much for using the better term, heritage development. I know thatís a bit of an oxymoron, heritage development. But, thatís really what weíre talking about. Developing our heritage. To my mind, this is a process that is a good-humored collaboration between residents and elected leaders that creates partnerships, that creates strong, well-animated places, that honors and cherishes the past with pride and passion.

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