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Mayor's capital spending plan puts $10.1M into parks, culturals, community centers

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

If Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown's Capital Spending Plan is approved, it would provide $900,000 to Broderick Park for safety fencing and public art on the grounds. That's just one of many projects that would be covered under the $10.1 million set aside for parks, community centers and cultural institutions.

Brown joined members of his administration, Common Councilmember David Rivera and representatives of Friends of Broderick Park on Bird Island to explain more about plans for that park.

"We are blessed to have world-class cultural institutions in the City of Buffalo that we continue to invest in," Brown said. "And those cultural institutions not only help to create a great quality of life in Buffalo, but they help to attract people all across the nation, and all across the world, to our community."

About $400,000 of the money set aside for Broderick Park would be spent to create art celebrating the site's role as a terminus for the Underground Railroad, the pathway countless escaped African- merican slaves traveled to flee into Canada in the 1800s.

"It's not just a fishing park," said George Johnson, who spoke on behalf of the Friends of Broderick Park. "We just want to sure that the people and the residents of the City of Buffalo utilize this park as much as possible. As you can see, it is beautiful."

The Buffalo History Museum, Shea's, Buffalo & Erie County Naval & Military Park, Leroy Coles public library branch, Buffalo Museum of Science, Riverside Rink and Cazenovia Park are also identified as sites that would receive funding under Brown's plan.

"It's just as important that they reflect the population that helps support them in their leadership and the content of their artistic and educational exhibitions," the mayor said. "While addressing systemic racism is something that must be done in every aspect of our society, our cultural institutions have a special role to play in this effort. Art, culture, music and the preservation of our history are instrumental to creating a society that is more accepting, empathetic and just to fill that mandate."

Michael Mroziak is an experienced, award-winning reporter whose career includes work in broadcast and print media. When he joined the WBFO news staff in April 2015, it was a return to both the radio station and to Horizons Plaza.
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