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Thread: New images in the Worst Case Scenario gallery - Buffalo, New York

  1. #1
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    New images in the Worst Case Scenario gallery - Buffalo, New York

    From Buffalo, New York. Larger images can be downloaded in the Cyburbia gallery.

    A-frame sign displayed in the Hertel Avenue public right-of-way.


    A large billboard with an inappropriate message is painted on the side of an otherwise attractive, possibly historic commercial structure in Buffalo's North Park neighborhood.


    A large, visually cluttered sign is displayed on a building in the pedestrian-oriented North park neighborhood. The use in the building does not contribute to street animation needed to keep the neighborhood business district vibrant.


    The facade of Kostas Restaurant was rebuilt with a Greek theme, contrasting with the typical American Mercantile style dominating Hertel Avenue. An addition to the building projects into the public right-of-way, interrupting the consistent building line of a long-established streetscape. Billboards clutter the rooftop of an adjacent commercial structure.


    Portable signs are long gone in most other parts of the United States, but they're still a common sight in the City of Buffalo. This sign is displayed in the public right-of-way, which the city's sign code actually allows!


    Cluttered, amateurish signage on an otherwise attractive commercial building in the University Heights neighborhood.


    Private use of the public right-of-way. Vehicles for sale are parked in the public right-of-way, on the sidewalk and next to the street.





    A new house in Buffalo's University Heights neighborhood is adjacent to a heavy industrial use, with no buffer dividing the uses.
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

  2. #2
    Cyburbian DecaturHawk's avatar
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    Re: New images in the Worst Case Scenario gallery - Buffalo, New York

    Originally posted by Dan
    Portable signs are long gone in most other parts of the United States, but they're still a common sight in the City of Buffalo.
    They are still alive and well here in beautiful Decatur, IL. Our new sign ordinance says that temporary signs are allowed 30 calendar days per year, but we don't have the staff to enforce it.

    A new house in Buffalo's University Heights neighborhood is adjacent to a heavy industrial use, with no buffer dividing the uses
    Whaddaya call that swell vinyl fence in the back yard?

  3. #3
    Cyburbian nerudite's avatar
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    That A-frame sign in the ROW doesn't bother me that much, as it leaves plenty of room for pedestrians and it is located far enough from the curb that passengers can get out of their cars. I'd take those over a free-standing sign 'lollipop' any day... especially in pedestrian-friendly areas.

    I hate those signs painted on the sides of buildings... Portland has terrible problems with those, as it's a way of sneaking around the no billboard clause (since murals are exempt).

    That used car display is awful! In Vancouver, we would have them put these really nice landscape buffers along the street in the auto zone district, and we had such a hard time keeping the dealerships from parking in the damn things. Auto dealers have been one of the banes of my career thus far, so these always tick me off...

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Jeff's avatar
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    Originally posted by nerudite


    I hate those signs painted on the sides of buildings... Portland has terrible problems with those, as it's a way of sneaking around the no billboard clause (since murals are exempt).

    You still see alot of the heroin detox, whos my daddy, etcs painted on the sides of buildings in Philly.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian ludes98's avatar
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    I too am not particularly offended by the "sandwich shop" A-frame signs. Municpalities here in AZ have been banning them, along with the vehicle displays (another thread), and the building painted signs. Building paintings have been resticted to art by prohibiting commercial messages. Signage restrictions along with lighting "dark sky" restrictions have become increasingly popular targets for code updates.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    I have been a strong proponent of allowing the "A-frame" signs in the public ROW, in pedestrian-oriented commercial districts. With some design and placement requirements, they can help to bring some interest to the district in the same way that outdoor seating and displays will. Look at a picture of the typical "Main Street" from the 1800's and you will see many of them. On the other hand, the rest of what you show is pretty bad, especially the car dealer.

  7. #7
    Originally posted by Cardinal
    I have been a strong proponent of allowing the "A-frame" signs in the public ROW, in pedestrian-oriented commercial districts. With some design and placement requirements, they can help to bring some interest to the district in the same way that outdoor seating and displays will. Look at a picture of the typical "Main Street" from the 1800's and you will see many of them. On the other hand, the rest of what you show is pretty bad, especially the car dealer.
    I agree - It's not the worse case-senario IMO and from a pedestrian prespective it's actually pleseant. Plus if planners got their way all the time, life would be pretty boring

  8. #8
    Dan -- great pics!!

    Place me in the "Pro A- Frame Sign" Camp in walkable neighborhoods they provide life & vibrancy to the street. Also let's not forget it is a business district. This is same reasoning is why the Olympic builders sign is so obnoxious -- so much for being pedestrian / neighborhood friendly!!!

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Jeff's avatar
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    As far as illegal signs go, Philly has been so overwhelmed by them (A-frames, on utility poles, etc) the city is giving community groups $0.10 for every sign they turn into the street department.

    I haven't noticed a difference yet

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    Cyburbian tsc's avatar
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    Dan, great pics,,, but you're dredging up 9 years of bad memories of working in Binghamton, NY
    "Yeehaw!" is not a foreign policy

    Renovating the '62 Metzendorf
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  11. #11
    A previous mayor of this fine mid-western city was a used car salesman. Man, it was open season for car displays in the public rights-of-way during his non-sequential THREE terms. It went so far as the Street Department painting stripes on the sidewalks to indicate the pedestrian portion of the walks. It has taken us twelve years to undo his recklessness. No wonder nobody wants to visit downtown.

    I like the small (4 sq. ft sign face area max) A-Frame signs in business districts, but the portable signs are horrific.
    On pitching to Stan Musial:
    "Once he timed your fastball, your infielders were in jeopardy."
    Warren Spahn

  12. #12

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    One more voice for the "pedestrian-oriented" A-frames.

    And Dan, you forget that in "The Town Next Door," tacky signs on wheels with flashing bulbs are part of the culture, just like jello mold salads and caseroles made with canned mushroom soup.

  13. #13
    Cyburbian Seabishop's avatar
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    Cluttered, amateurish signage on an otherwise attractive commercial building in the University Heights neighborhood.
    Just Pizza needs to clutter up their building to compensate for a stupid name by advertising that they don't have just pizza.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Rumpy Tunanator's avatar
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    -They still have those types of signs on sidewalks (and on buildings) in other cities that I've been to and I'd have to say that in the suburbs they are a lot worse than in N.Buffalo. As for worse case scenario, I think Niagara Falls is a lot worse.
    A guy once told me, "Do not have any attachments, do not have anything in your life you are not willing to walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you spot the heat around the corner."


    Neil McCauley (Robert DeNiro): Heat 1995

  15. #15
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    A few more for tonight:

    Let's kill the streetscape! Almost all the ground level windows of this building on Clinton Street in the blue collar Kaisertown neighborhood have been sealed.

    Here's a beat up fence along Clinton Street in Kaisertown that us covered with signs adertising beer, cigarettes, and other goodies.


    More from the world of portable signs! Ths beauty in Kaisertown is IN THE STREET.


    Back to University Heights. This is a problem throughout Buffalo; retail districts with storefronts containing offices and other uses that don't generate pedestrian traffic or contribute to street animation. Here's a social services agency in a storefront in what could be a more vibrant college neighborhood.
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

  16. #16
    Cyburbian Wannaplan?'s avatar
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    Re: New images in the Worst Case Scenario gallery - Buffalo, New York

    Originally posted by Dan
    From Buffalo, New York. Larger images can be downloaded in the Cyburbia gallery.
    Dan, those are wonderful pics. Great job! But I'm curious: How exactly are those scenes conseidered Worst Case Scenarios? I mean, have you ever been through the Detroit neighborhoods? Some of the issues you point out seem trivial - the autos within the public ROW (yet still plenty of sidewalk for pedestrians) and "amateurish" signage. In Detroit, some people live next to abondoned homes with heaping piles of garbage in the front yard or shop at stores next to empty buildings that have their own resident flora and fauna. Compared to that, your scenes of Buffalo represent the American Dream idealized.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Originally posted by Dan
    A few more for tonight:

    Let's kill the streetscape! Almost all the ground level windows of this building on Clinton Street in the blue collar Kaisertown neighborhood have been sealed.
    Is the glass half empty or is it half full. The owner would probably say "all of the ground level windows on this building face the street."

  18. #18
    Cyburbian
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    Lovely bunker house Dan!, the only thing missing is a barb wire perimeter fence and anti-personal mines laid in the front yard...oh and an automatic gun turret on the roof...

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