With the severe, long-term economic and population decline in Buffalo and the surrounding older suburbs, the housing vacancy rate has rapidly increased. Since 1990 vacancy rate estimates have increased from 10% to as high as 23% — among the highest in the nation. Decent, solidly built vacant older houses become community problems, dragging down communities as targets for vandalism and crime. As they are demolished, though, they leave holes in the sense of place, the fabric of community, and a visual and psychological emptiness. This short film aims to promote a conversation about low-income communities' efforts and struggles in revitalizing neglected historical neighborhoods by valuing the people and the place as assets.

Produced by Preservation Buffalo Niagara
Funded by the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo

j vimeo.com/10090840

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