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Buffalo is benefiting from recent successes

The July 14 News article highlighting the “failures” of Buffalo development proposals over the years was interesting. But we’re missing the follow-up – the many recent successes.

Yes, there were many red herrings and poor past decisions that Western New Yorkers are still paying for, or trying to correct; some we drive by every day. But how about a new article just as big, with colorful graphics and as many reporter man-hours, highlighting the successes?

Feature the Larkin Building; the Hotel @ the Lafayette; Canalside, which ultimately proved that simpler, smaller, lighter is better than behemoth; the stellar Avant; Linwood Avenue, brought back to beauty by homeowners who banded together; the Statler, saved finally by a local developer and now hosting beautiful events; Hertel and Elmwood avenues, fun, walkable, mixed-use districts; cars returning to Main Street; and the Medical Campus, a long-term linchpin of economic growth. These are the result of preservationists, developers, public and private entities, and communities working together.

There is much left to do, including fixing the city’s school system, but it all starts with smart growth and a healthy economy.

I grew up here but moved away after graduating from Buffalo State because I did not see a career future here. Fifteen years later, I moved back. Western New York is learning to balance historic pride and forward progress. Even the city’s credit rating has been repaired.

The New York Times recognized our exceptional growth in a glowing July 30 article. Can we stop the self-snarking? Can we finally acknowledge what even the Times sees – that we’ve become a fantastic, forward-moving region?

Robbie Ann McPherson

Buffalo