UB Architectural Awareness Project to Hold Five-Mile Bike Ride Through Time

Release Date: June 5, 1997 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- There"s good news for area architecture buffs. The Architectural Awareness Project (TAPP) of the University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning will sponsor a bike ride through the historic Buffalo waterfront and some of the city"s earliest industrial neighborhoods on Saturday, June 14, and Saturday, June 28.

Anyone with a bike, a helmet and a heartbeat is invited to come along on an easy, five-mile ride through time. So grab a sandwich and a fanny pack and get going!

Riders can register by calling TAPP at 834-3428. The $6 fee per rider can be paid on the day of the ride. Children in bicycle seats are free and children pedaling their own bikes must be over 10 years of age. Rain dates are June 21 and July 5. A sag wagon will accompany the riders.

The ride will begin at 10 a.m. both days in the parking lot of Crawdaddy"s at the Erie Basin Marina. Parking is free. The tour will be lead by docent Mac McCaffery, who will start off by describing the story of Buffalo"s beginnings. McCaffery is no stranger to Buffalo architecture, its history and bikeways. His passion for local history is "Austin Fox-like" and contagious. He"s strictly a bike commuter and refuses to own a car, making him the best possible docent for this particular tour.

The ride will continue along the waterfront through the Cobblestone District, where McCaffery will point out Buffalo"s oldest working smithy shop, the Buffalo Blacksmithing Co., in the shadows of the spanking new Marine Midland Arena.

The tour will then traverse the Valley neighborhood, the Old First Ward where original workman cottages are dwarfed by the looming grain elevators that stand as sentinels on the Buffalo River.

Next, riders will take a swing up Ganson Street, the first street in the nation to be lit by electricity, and take a look at the only box elevator still standing in the country. In this, the 100th anniversary of our cityscape, the fate of the old elevator is tenuous.

Doubling back toward downtown, the ride will come upon Buffalo"s firefighting tugboat, the Edward M. Cotter, used ceremonially today, in its berth at the Michigan Street Bridge. Riders also will see the old D&L Railroad Station and the south terminus of the seven-mile riverwalk.

The last leg of the tour will head for the rocky hook of land that swings out into Buffalo Harbor -- past Crawdaddy"s, the Buffalo Lighthouse No. 2 and the marina -- stopping finally at land"s end, where riders can sit on the sun-warmed rocks and gobble their sandwiches. Those interested can climb the observation tower to enjoy the 360-degree panoramic view of the steeples, domes, bridges and white sails, and see the wide variety of views for which Buffalo is duly famous: a skyline highlighted by the classical buildings of E.B. Green, Richardson, Sullivan, Dietel and Wade; the behemoths of the grain and steel industries; the Canadian shore, and the roofline of the new waterfront community.

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