Boxes are painted by local artists and invite community members to submit input on future development and programming

As part of the AARP Community Challenge grant, LISC WNY in partnership  with the Buffalo Center for Health Equity, launched the Pride in Place Buffalo Initiative. The project  included the installation of Idea Boxes throughout Buffalo’s East Side to celebrate and reinvigorate Black  and Brown culture. The 20 idea boxes, designed by local artists, aim to gather community input for often  overlooked spaces including Black- and Brown-owned businesses and organizations, as well as abandoned buildings and lots.

The Idea Boxes can be found primarily in the 14204, 14208, 14211, 14212 and 14215 zip codes  at the following locations:

  • Bluegrass Poppies by LaShonda Davis – Grassroots Gardens at 389 Broadway Avenue • Greenpeace by LaShonda Davis – CSX Underpass at Northland and Fillmore Avenues  • Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star by Kathleen Murphy – The Northland Corridor at Winchester and E. Delavan Avenue
  • It’s who we are by Muhammad Zaman – Northland Avenue at Longview Avenue (West Parcel next to 683 Northland)
  • My Home My Heart by Muhammad Zaman – Belmont Shelter Complex at 1490 Jefferson Avenue • Community Camo by J.Dough – Northland Avenue and Chelsea Place (East Parcel next to 683 Northland)
  • Let’s Grow Buffalo by J.Dough – E. Ferry St. and Wohlers Avenue
  • Child artists’ by J.Dough – Canisius College, Jefferson Avenue and Florida Street • Year of Unity by Jerusalem Moses – Citizens’ Alliance at 836 East Delavan Avenue • Under the Same Skies by Kelly Ann Swartz – Matt Urban Center at 293 Paderewski Drive  • Stay Gold Buffalo by Daryl Reding – Green Space at Clark and Kent Streets
  • The community at work by Dorothea Edwards – 806 Fillmore Avenue
  • North, South, East, West Buffalo by Dorothea Edwards – Belmont Shelter Complex at 871 E.  Ferry Street
  • Beyond the Freedom Wall by Jillian Daniels – 60 Hedley Place
  • Beyond the Freedom Wall by Jillian Daniels – Nash House at 36 Nash Street
  • Spectrum_01 by Charles Rockwell – Urban Fruits and Veggies at 324 Glenwood Avenue • Thermodynamics_01 by Charles Rockwell – 366 Dodge Street
  • XII by Imani Williamson – The Golden Cup Café at 1323 Jefferson Avenue
  • The Manifestation of Prosperity by Deja Marie 1153 Jefferson Avenue
  • Bloom by Tara Sasiadek – Canisius College, Hughes Avenue and Meech Street

“We hope these boxes will draw attention to beautiful spaces and bring Pride in Place to all areas in  Buffalo. We want to document the community’s voice,” said Alexa Wajed of Pride in Place Buffalo. “It’s  why we need community members to submit their ideas, suggestions and stories to our public art  suggestion boxes.”

Each box invites community members to answer the following prompts:

  • What types of activities would you participate in if available in this space?
  • What type of development projects would you support in this space (or in this neighborhood?) • What type of creative art project(s) would you like to see in this space (or in this neighborhood?) • What other ideas do you have that could draw people to this space and make it more  interactive?
  • Do you have a story as a member of the community? Share it with us.
  • In what other ways can this Idea Box be used in this neighborhood?

The idea boxes will be open for submissions throughout the summer of 2021. Community members can  offer suggestions in a variety of ways – completing a designated postcard and inserting it into the idea  boxes, scanning a QR code and submitting online, emailing ideas to or sharing their thoughts on social media using #PrideinPlaceBuffalo.



LISC WNY works regionally with partners to bring local neighborhood ideas to life; creating great places  to live, work and raise a family for all. LISC takes a place-based and people-centered approach help  individuals and small businesses currently isolated from economic opportunity better connect to  opportunities necessary for them to successfully participate in their regions’ growth and prosperity. LISC  WNY’s focus on neighborhood revitalization, affordable housing, neighborhood business, and family  income & wealth building goals aims to better coordinate and concentrate workforce, small business,  and real estate development in districts or neighborhoods that have traditionally seen a lack of  investment. Learn more about LISC WNY at

About The Buffalo Center for Health Equity 

The Buffalo Center for Health Equity works to eliminate race, economic and geographic-based health  inequities in Western New York by changing the social and economic conditions that cause illness and  shorten lives among the sickest of the region. The Center works collaboratively with community  members and organizations as well as the public and faith-based sectors to advance this multi-level  agenda. The work focuses primarily in the 14204, 14206, 14211, 14212 and, 14215 zip codes in Buffalo,  NY where African Americans are dying at three times the rate as their white counterparts. The health  inequities affecting Buffalonians, like in many American cities, are the downstream effect of failing  schools, high unemployment, low property values, poor access to public transportation, absence of  grocery stores, lead contamination in homes, highway pollution, brownfields, and poor access to  healthcare. These social and economic conditions are known to be the primary drivers of health.

About AARP 

AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50  and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence and nearly 38 million  members, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to families: health

security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. To learn more, visit or follow @AARP  and @AARPadvocates on social media.