Riverline design process to take a year to complete

Former DL&W Corridor to add another connector to Downtown Buffalo

Mike Baggerman
November 25, 2019 - 3:00 am
Buffalo River at Red Jacket Park where The Riverline begins. November 20, 2019 (WBEN Photo/Mike Baggerman)

Buffalo River at Red Jacket Park where The Riverline begins. November 20, 2019 (WBEN Photo/Mike Baggerman)

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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WBEN) - The Western New York Land Conservancy will focus on the concept design of The Riverline for the next year before officially presenting any timeline for the 1.5 mile greenway project in South Buffalo.

Last week, the group officially re-branded the stretch between Canalside and the Buffalo River at Red Jacket Riverfront Natural Habitat Park as "The Riverline" after it was known as the DL&W Corridor for years.

"(The concept and schematic design) is a critical phase because we need to have NFTA support because they are the owners of the project," WNY Land Conservancy Executive Director Nancy Smith said.

The Riverline will be split into three separate areas known as "The Del" by Canalside, "The Junctures" near the neighborhoods, and "The Basswoods" by Red Jacket Riverfront Natural Habitat Park. Smith said that the three areas will be connected but have their own unique features because some things could work well by the park that wouldn't work well in neighborhoods.

Smith said the stretch of land is un-walkable today because the bridges were taken out decades ago.

"We've spent the last two years thinking about a possible future and re-imaging that corridor," Smith said. "(It's not a trail) today...That will be about 30 percent of design."

In New York City, there is a walkable trail area known as "The High Line". It utilized an abandoned elevated railroad track to create a walking path and tourism destination.

"We absolutely think it's possible (to have) Buffalo's version (of The High Line)," Smith said. "It's not going to be like The High Line. It will be our version, our neighborhoods. We emphasize connection to nature. That is front and center."

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