Kenmore is an inner-ring suburb of Buffalo, New York, just north of the city line. Kenmore gained some recognition among the planning community in the US lately for being named one of Great Places in America for 2009 by the American Planning Association. From the APA Web site:
I took these photos in 2005. The village is mainly unchanged from the time I took the photos. Outside of some city neighborhoods, change in the look and feel of neighborhoods in the Buffalo region takes place over decades, not years or months as in other parts of the country.Buffalo's first bedroom community and streetcar suburb, Kenmore is a quaint village with its own mayor, trustees, and police and fire departments. Here you'll find tree-lined streets and exceptional views of the Queen City's skyline. Sidewalks line both sides of every street making this compact neighborhood — one of the 100 most dense incorporated places in the U.S. (2000 Census) — a pedestrian's delight. Nearly every residence is within a quarter-mile walk of a bus stop and low traffic volumes bring bicyclists to neighborhood streets.
Also, in any other part of the country, a community like Kenmore would likely be gentrified beyond recognition and affordability by now. A street like Delaware Avenue would be lined by chi-chi boutiques, day spas, yoga and wellness studios, galleries and expensive bistros. Not Kenmore, which remains solidly middle-class, and very affordable.
A benefit to living in Kenmore: the village plows all the sidewalks. A shortcoming of living in Kenmore: draconian traffic enforcement. We're talking about getting pulled over and ticketed for 1 MPH over the posted limit.
Housing stock in the Buffalo area is dominated by wood frame construction. The majority of houses in the Buffalo area built in the interwar period have been subject to insensitive modifications and "improvements" - aluminum and vinyl siding, aftermarket windows of much different dimensions than the windows they replaced, wood railings replaced by gaudy decorative metal railings, and enclosed porches, to name a few. For some reason, a much smaller percentage of the interwar housing stock in Kenmore was affected by postwar exterior "improvements" compared to houses in North Buffalo; the lower midle-class bungalow belt neighborhoods in Northeast Buffalo, the East Side, and South Buffalo/Lackawanna; and areas straddling the city line in Cheektowaga.