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Project Experience

Canal Side Cultural Master Plan


The Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation (ECHDC) was established in 2005 to help restore economic growth to Buffalo and Western New York based on the region’s legacy of pride, urban significance and natural beauty. This includes a focus on Canal Side, a 20-acre historic part of Buffalo’s waterfront, whose heritage includes being the location of the western terminus of the Erie Canal, several grain elevators that serve to remind that Buffalo once fed America, and an important maritime history.

Lord Cultural Resources was selected to lead a team of planners to develop short term, medium term and long term plans for Canal Side, with a particular focus on telling the Story of Buffalo in ways that will attract people to the waterfront on a year-round basis and expose them to tax-paying commercial businesses. Lord Cultural Resources was responsible for market and comparables analyses, development of a governance, staffing and operations plan, identification of target markets and strategies to attract them and to maximize revenues and control costs. We also prepared attendance, operating revenue and expense projections and an implementation plan.