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Microdevelopers Build a Promising Future Using Buffalo's Past

Buffalo is benefiting from a wave of "microdevelopment" driven by entrepreneurs and young urbanists with a belief in preservation as social activism. By rehabbing vacant properties one at a time they're hoping to turn around a city.

Penelope Green profiles Bernice Radle and Jason Wilson, and their colleagues, who are working to revitalize Buffalo using an innovative strategy that is part real estate investment, part historic preservation and part tactical urbanism. 

"Passionate and preservation-minded, Ms. Radle and Mr. Wilson both have degrees in urban planning and are emblematic of a particular wave of development here. Buying on a small scale, they and their peers are perhaps best described as microdevelopers, rehabbing derelict properties to rent and perhaps eventually sell in an attempt to save houses from demolition and preserve a neighborhood or two. In so doing, they are attempting to shore up the city’s long, slow decline since the population and jobs began leaking away more than a half-century ago," explains Green.

Full Story: Small-Scale Developers, Big Dreams

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