Rochester, Buffalo Preservationists Join Forces

The directors of two Buffalo area preservation groups voted to merge their organizations late last week. Both the Landmark Society of the Niagara Frontier and the Preservation Coalition of Erie County will now be merged into one organization – Preservation Buffalo Niagara.

According to Buffalo Business First, the decision comes after nine months of negotiations. Preservation Buffalo Niagara will be governed by a 21-member board- 10 of the seats will be filled from existing directors and the remaining spots will be filled anew.

Buffalo Rising has more of the story:

According to Harvey [McCartney, retired Director of the Landmark Society] and Cynthia [Van Ness, President of the Preservation Coalition of Erie County], the new organization will have its work cut out. In addition to playing a key role in preparing for the 2011 conference, several longstanding preservation issues need to be addressed, including conducting more historic resource surveys (Rochester was fully surveyed in the 1980’s, Buffalo has not been), and bringing more preservation attention to Buffalo’s east side. A common thread through the discussions was the need for the new organization to get out in front of preservation issues and be proactive, rather than reactive—which all too often results in bruising preservation battles with preservationists being labeled “obstructionists.”

There will be a national search for an executive director in the months to come.

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