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Manufactured Housing: An Affordable Housing Opportunity for Post Industrial Cities

Grace Celik, Erin Engle, Libertad Figuerero, Samuel Gallivan, Nicole Hill, David Kelly, Melanie Monroy, Rakshanda Nagaraj, Brennon Thompson, Angelina White, Joshua Wilcox, Ernest Sternberg, Sydney Alford — May 19, 2020

"This report was prepared by graduate students in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University at Buffalo, as the assignment in "practicum" (sometimes called studio) course required for the Master of Urban Planning degree. Professor Ernest Sternberg was our instructor. "

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PUSH Buffalo's Green Development Zone: a Model for New Economy Community Development

Sam Magavern, Skye Hart — Jun 29, 2017

2008 marks the year that PUSH Buffalo founded the Green Development Zone in Buffalo’s West Side. Encompassing 25 square blocks, the Green Development Zone (GDZ) is an area that PUSH is making more environmentally and economically sustainable. PUSH stands for People United for Sustainable Housing, and it is a non-profit corporation that uses a unique combination of community organizing, policy advocacy, and neighborhood redevelopment.  

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PUSH Buffalo's Net Zero House at 10 Winter St.

Kyle Taylor — Oct 30, 2011

PUSH Buffalo acquired the property at 10 Winter Street for $2200 at the City tax foreclosure auction, free and clear of all liens.  The house is a single family home that is approximately 1198 sq. ft., with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a partial basement and a crawl space.  The house was originally built in 1920.  The farm house style is unusual in this neighborhood.  Previous owners never altered the original floor plan and had not made any significant investment in the …

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Easy Ways to Lower your Utility Bills

Sam Magavern Aug 7, 2008

The average home in Buffalo can expect energy bills of $2,267 per year.  An energy-efficient home in Buffalo will have much lower bills – only $1,451 per year.  That is a savings of $816.  Here are some simple steps you can take to start saving money on your energy bills.

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Is a Green Building an Energy Efficient Building?

Steven Mindy — Nov 27, 2007

Is a “green building” an energy efficient building? Unfortunately, the answer to that question is “not necessarily.”  As the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) notes, green building rating systems are flexible, and buildings with poor energy efficiency may be certified “green.”  Accordingly, how do green rating systems address energy efficiency and what rating system is best suited to controlling operating costs in affordable …

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Affordable Housing and the Environment in Buffalo, New York

Sam Magavern — Jul 7, 2007

Buffalo is suffering from severe housing and environmental problems, many of which overlap.  New housing continues to sprawl into the suburbs and exurbs, despite a large surplus of housing units in Buffalo, where the City plans to demolish 10,000 units in the next ten years.  In general, housing is not being designed, built, or renovated in an environmental manner.  Our outdated housing policies and choices contribute significantly to pollution, both locally and globally: the …

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Buffalo Habitat for Humanity: The Challenges and Prospects of Green Building

Martha McNeill — Apr 19, 2007

Habitat for Humanity Buffalo has operated since 1985, and in that time has rehabilitated or built more than 150 homes in the cities of Buffalo and Lackawanna.  An affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI), Habitat builds affordable housing for qualified low-income people.  Once approved, homeowners must put 500 hours of “sweat equity” into Habitat projects, including their homeowner education.  In return, they receive a zero-interest mortgage, the …

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PUSH Buffalo's Community Housing Co-operative: A Case Study in Green Building Rehabilitation

Mary O'Donnell — Apr 19, 2007

Between March 2006 and March 2007, a group of community organizers at People United for Sustainable Housing (PUSH) used green building methods to create affordable, safe, and sustainable housing by rehabilitating a formerly abandoned four unit building on Buffalo’s West Side.  Organizations and agencies involved in affordable housing can learn from PUSH’s example and should replicate or support similar projects because greener and more affordable housing will benefit the …

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Weatherization Assistance and Low-Income Households

Constance Giessert — Apr 19, 2007

Weatherization is one of the most efficient affordable housing tools available to communities and residents.  Weatherization is defined as the practice of protecting a building from the elements (such as sunlight, precipitation and wind) and modifying the building to reduce energy consumption and maximize energy efficiency.  Traditionally, weatherization processes have focused on heating and cooling as methods to conserve energy.  Currently, however, weatherization is expanding …

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Home Energy Conservation: Affordable Housing and the Environment

Katie Woodruff — Apr 1, 2007

For low-income homeowners and renters, paying the utility bills every month can become a struggle.  Even with assistance from programs such as Erie County Social Services HEAP program, many find paying those bills takes up a large portion of one’s income, decreasing funds available for other necessities.  Finding inexpensive ways to decrease utility bills can save money that could be better used elsewhere.  One way to reduce utility bills is to conserve energy.  Not …

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The Potential of Deconstruction in Buffalo, New York

Erik Faleski — Apr 1, 2007

Building deconstruction is not a novel idea but represents an ancient practice reinvented for our modern era.  Deconstruction is an environmentally friendly (yet fiscally remunerative) alternative to traditional building demolition.  Deconstruction is: [t]he process of carefully dismantling a building in order to salvage components for reuse and recycling.  Typically, a small team of skilled and licensed professionals disassemble the structure, setting aside the valuable …

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Integrating Deconstruction and Recycling Into the Demolition Process in Buffalo, NY

Tara Stahl — Jan 1, 2007

Buffalo’s Comprehensive Plan currently calls for the demolition of 10,000 buildings over a period of ten years.  While demolition contractors may recycle a small percentage of the waste created from demolitions, the process generates a great deal of waste that ends up in landfills.  Many of the materials that are thrown away after a building is demolished are either reusable or recyclable.  In order to lessen the negative environmental impact of building demolition, Buffalo …

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Residential Deconstruction in Buffalo: A Viable Alternative to Demolition

Sean Cooney — Jan 1, 2007

The problem of vacancy and abandonment manifests itself in many different ways.  Whether it is crime, decreasing property values, loss of tax revenue, neighborhood eyesores, or removing the condemned structures, the City of Buffalo is facing a monumental challenge both in resources and policy.  The deconstruction of abandoned homes offers opportunities for cost savings, environmental benefits, and economic development.  An alternative to demolition, deconstruction is the …

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