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On the Waterfront

So you think Buffalo has a hard time figuring out what to do with its waterfront, do ya? Mad that we can’t just build a signature bridge, huh? Madder still that we can’t just knock the Skyway bridge down? Furious with obstructionists who don’t want a Bass Pro Shop? Livid about the ice boom? And don’t even get you started about all the blind, misguided fools who can’t see that a huge casino downtown will turn our city around?

Yes, my friend, you do in fact have all the answers. If only you were in charge, by God, some things would get done.

Take Buffalo Rising founder Newell Nussbaumer. There’s a guy who gets behind a cause. The passive beach down on the waterfront would never have been there without his commitment. But Newell knows the wisdom of that old Bob Dylan song:

Time passes slowly up here in the mountains,
We sit beside bridges and walk beside fountains,
Catch the wild fishes that float through the stream,
Time passes slowly when you’re lost in a dream.

In fact, the waterfront has been a hot topic for at least sixty years, as evidenced by this award given to Rose Marie Vilardo, a 1949 student of Grover Cleveland High School who addressed the timeless question: “What About our Waterfront?” Check out who the President of the Buffalo and Erie County Planning Association was in 1949.

Now, Newell, I must ask you the tough question: Are you a vampire?