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Green Infrastructure

Buffalo, New York Urban Vacant Land Assessment Protocol

Since 1950, the population of the City of Buffalo has decreased approximately 40 percent as a result of suburbanization and decline in its local industrial base. This decline in population has resulted in many properties becoming vacant and abandoned. Through state and federal grants, the city has undertaken a demolition program to remove and discard dangerous and dilapidated buildings. The vacant lots left after the demolition program present an opportunity to provide ecological benefits such as green space and stormwater runoff retention. Through this technical assistance project, EPA assisted the Buffalo Sewer Authority in developing a method to systematically assess the effectiveness of vacant land in urban areas to retain stormwater runoff. 

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  • Buffalo NY Urban Vacant Land Assessment Protocol (PDF)(42 pp, 7 MB, July 2016, EPA 832-R-15-013)
    This document summarizes the assessment protocol developed to help the City of Buffalo NY to evaluated vacant house plots for their potential to support stormwater management goals.