Feb 12, 2013

Broadway-Fillmore Neighborhood Selected for EPA Assistance for Sustainable Growth Through the ‘Building Blocks’ Program

A new coalition has recently formed in the Broadway-Fillmore neighborhood, the Fillmore Corridor Neighborhood Coalition (FCNC). It is one of forty-three communities in twenty-seven states that have been designated to receive technical assistance from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for pursuing sustainable growth that encourages economic development while providing a safeguard for health and the environment.

EPA staff and national experts will converge to conduct one to two day workshops that focus on using the Sustaining Equitable Development tool. The FCNC requested the help in order to identify the most effective tools and strategies for housing affordability and consensus within the community to move the neighborhood forward.


The goal of this tool is to aid the local government, partner organizations, and community members. It will function in two ways; to better understand the challenges and opportunities associated with neighborhood change and identify strategies to manage change and support community goals around housing, culture, local businesses, and jobs. The path to success starts with a self-assessment, which will identify the goals of the communities and explore appropriate strategies considering the condition of the community. Then a set of “next steps” can begin to be formulated to address specific community needs.


John D. Murphy, executive director of Broadway-Fillmore Neighborhood Housing Services submitted the request for technical assistance on behalf of the FCNC. “I’m delighted the Fillmore Corridor was selected as a site for this Technical Assistance award. Buffalo’s near east side has so many challenges with population loss, vacancy, and under-investment, that the Building Blocks program will allow our agency to directly involve neighborhood residents in developing ‘next steps’ strategies in revitalizing the length of Fillmore taking the energy and investment in the Larkin District, and linking it along the length of Fillmore Avenue to the significant investment in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Park area.”


Paul Harris, president of the South Fillmore Block Club (SFBC) and Fillmore resident stated, “We hope we’ve created a new model of success with the collaboration of community groups and organizations, non-profits like Broadway-Fillmore NHS and Martin Luther King, Jr. CDC, Daemen College and the University of Buffalo as academic partners, the urban farming community, the Central Terminal, and the Broadway Market as examples of potentially dynamic community assets, and by working together along with the help from foundations and local government, we can bring new life, community empowerment, and investment to this targeted revitalization strategy area on Buffalo’s near east side.”

For additional information on the Building Blocks program, click here. For additional photos of the Broadway-Fillmore neighborhood from my collection, click here.

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