It’s been a while since we last discussed the “Buffalo Blueway” Ohio Street Boat Launch. 2021 in fact. Located next to the Buffalo Scholastic Rowing Club’s (BSRA) Patrick Paladino Memorial Boathouse, this paddlecraft launch is looking, and operating, a lot differently these days.
In the 2021 post, Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper prioritized the mission goals that would transform the site into a more user-friendly, nature-forward, waterfront park.
Debris Deflect – two floating deflectors will be installed to help dampen wave forces, as well as deflect floating debris and flowing ice away from the shoreline and boat launch
North Path – to provide pedestrian connections to Ohio Street and the Shoreline Trail that evokes the former rail line
Boat Launch – the improved boat launch will feature carry-in, car-top fishing boat access and paddlecraft launching with timber guiderails
Central Dropoff – new vehicular and pedestrian traffic pattern will allow for more efficient hand launching
Wheelchair Accessible Fishing Pier – A pedestrian promenade/walkway and fixed pier overlook platform will provide universal access to the river
Parking – upgrades to parking area pavements and pathways to allow for improved access
A visit to the Ohio Street Boat Launch, and it’s clear to see that those goals have mostly been completed, although it appears that the paddlecraft launch is still somewhat laden with debris that has floated in from the Buffalo River.
“The newly renovated NYSDEC Ohio Street Boat Launch has been upgraded to be an incredible spot to launch paddlecraft, fish off the accessible fishing pier or sit and watch the lake freighters roll by. A car-top boat launch includes features for carry-in, car-top fishing boat access and paddle craft launching. The fishing pier is wheelchair accessible to allow the pedestrian promenade and pier overlook platform to be accessible to everyone. A new North Path provides pedestrian connections to Ohio Street and the Shoreline Trail.” – Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper
This re-imagined waterfront resource is considered part of the Buffalo Blueway, an effort to reconnect the residents of Buffalo with waterfront resources
I must say that my favorite park features are the bat lodges, the rail-inspired trail walkways, and the natural habitats that have been created for birds, butterflies, etc. What might appear to be unkempt areas, to those who are unaware of the function of Maintained Meadow Areas (MMAs), are actually the most productive and thriving aspects of the park. It might be nice to see some strategic MMA infill along the walkways, which are probably difficult to mow anyways.
The NYSDEC Ohio Street Boat Launch is located at 421 Ohio Street.
Partners in this project include: Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, Buffalo Billion, Empire State Development, Anchor QEA, Watts Architecture & Engineering, and Edgewater Resources.