Today, a team of staffers from the National Trust for Historic Preservation came to town to start filming "Buffalo Unscripted," a documentary that will be screened at the organization's conference here in October. Earlier this week, I caught up with the doc project's creator, Jason Lloyd Clement, and wrote about the project in today's Gusto. Here's what he had to say when I asked him why preservation -- the main goal of the organization he works for -- is progressive rather than regressive:
Preservation is more than just saving old houses and old historic sites.
This is a really creative field and in cities like Buffalo, there is such an amazing opportunity to use that city as almost a text book for adaptive use of spaces, spaces that are in the urban core that already exist -- there’s no need to build anything new -- and that people care about and can be reinterpreted and reintegrated into the community. And I think that’s the new side of preservation.
Yes, there’s lots of beautiful old homes and mansions and things like that that people associate with the preservation movement, but this movement is doing great, cutting-edge things to reintroduce cities to buildings that they have forgotten or that people don’t think there’s a future for.
Buffalo really blew me away when I went there. I think I was floored by the can-do attitude of this city that just meets you at every intersection, in every neighborhood. It’s funny, because we’re launching the project in the Central Terminal, but I can’t think of any other building that’s more symbolic of what the city is trying to do and what the point of this project is.