SAH Newsletter

A Master of Accumulation - Dennis Maher Profiled in NY Times

by User Not Found | Jan 24, 2013
Dennis Maher is a professor at the University at Buffalo and is the tour leader for TR 19 Re-Making the Post-Industrial Houseand the Albright-Knox Art Gallery at the SAH Conference.

BUFFALO — In 2009, Dennis Maher, a professor of architecture at the University at Buffalo, bought an abandoned property from D’Youville College for $10,000. It was a Buffalo double house, built just before the turn of the 20th century, as common a sight here as a maple tree.

Its ramshackle and orphaned condition was familiar, too. With the city’s vacancy rate at more than 15 percent — one of the highest in the state — it seems that every block in Mr. Maher’s West Buffalo neighborhood had at least one empty house. (Like that of many Rust Belt cities, Buffalo’s population peaked at midcentury and has been declining ever since.) In response, the city has pursued a policy of demolition, frustrating preservationists, in a program that aimed to raze 5,000 buildings over the last five years (to date, the number may be closer to about 3,000).

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