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The Buffalo, New York Outer Harbor as a Cultural Landscape

Date: Oct 31, 2018
Author(s): Kerry Traynor, Annie Shentag, Camden Miller
Topic(s): Data / Demographics / History: Historic Preservation, Environment: General, Environment: Land Use, Health: General
Type: Publication

"This cultural landscape report primarily focuses on the Buffalo Outer Harbor (Outer Harbor) located in Buffalo, New York, with an understanding that it is part of a much larger context including the Buffalo Inner Harbor (Inner Harbor) and Buffalo Middle Harbor (Middle Harbor) in order to provide context and a holistic understanding of the surrounding landscape. This cultural landscape report investigates and documents the landscape history and the existing conditions within the study area of the Outer Harbor, a site with a long, rich, and evolving history. This document focuses on the development of the area’s history, inventories the site’s existing conditions, and analyzes the historic and existing conditions in order to evaluate the significance and integrity of the site as a cultural landscape."

"The Outer Harbor is an artificial harbor created by the Federal Government with the construction of a breakwater system that included three periods of construction: 1869, 1874, and 1896. The breakwater system in the Outer Harbor was completed in 1902 at a cost of over $4,500,000. When constructed the breakwater system (Inner and Outer Harbor), at 4.8 miles in length and resulting artificial harbor were the longest in the world. Alterations of the Lake Erie coastline through the construction of industrial piers and infill during the 19th and 20th centuries created the current landscape. The artificial harbor and industrial landscape retain a high level of integrity and are significant for their contribution to the industrial and maritime history of the city, and the resulting ecological systems that have established themselves within the Outer Harbor. This cultural landscape report works to set up a basis of knowledge for the potential to create treatment recommendations that will provide guidance in the rehabilitation and preservation of the Outer Harbor."


Citation: Traynor, Kerry. Miller, Camden. Shentag, Annie. The Buffalo, New York Outer Harbor as a Cultural Landscape. kta preservation specialists. August 2018. https://www.kta-preservation.com/