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Community Gathers for Update on Ralph Wilson Park

Last week, almost 200 members of the Buffalo and West Side community came out to Waterfront Elementary School to hear about the progress of work being done at Ralph Wilson Park. In the year since our last community meeting, construction has started on Phase 1 of the park, with teams working year-round to ensure that we can all enjoy the park as soon as possible.

Throughout the evening, key players in the transformation of the park provided updates. RWPC’s Executive Director, Katie Campos, provided an overview of the community-driven design process that got us to this point, as well as the key design principles (community access, fix the basics, and sustainability). The City of Buffalo’s Deputy Commissioner for Parks and Recreation, Andy Rabb, shared the current timeline for the first phase of construction, including changes to the plan that have occurred since last year, noting that significant progress has been made. Sean Sullivan, Site Superintendent for Gilbane Construction provided updates on both the intricacies of rehabilitating the shoreline and the pedestrian bridge that will soon be shipped across the ocean from Italy,and will be installed later this year across the 190 to facilitate access to the park from 4th Street. Jill Jedlicka, Executive Director of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, did a deep dive on why the shoreline work is absolutely critical for our region and the health of our waterways. The work on the shoreline is intricate and dually important, as it will both protect the park from flooding and create key habitat for native aquatic species.

Couldn’t make it? Watch the video of the meeting and see our photos. And – don’t miss the video of construction to date we shared at the meeting!

Here are the answers to the questions we received following the meeting. Want to get involved with the Conservancy? Check out our upcoming events!