BUFFALO—Erie Community College was awarded the first Peter B. and Genevieve R. Flickinger Stewardship Award for the restoration of the school's iconic 1901 City Campus Building at Preservation Buffalo Niagara's 6th Annual Preservation Awards Ceremony and Luncheon at Kleinhans Music Hall on May 30.
The over $11 million preservation project (which began in 2010) included replacement of the one-time Buffalo Post Office building's roof; granite and mortar repair of the building's towering exterior; replacement of the stone walls and cast iron porte cochere at the college's Oak Street loading dock; restoration of fourth floor art glass; and replacement of the entire building's windows and window frames; and installation of four copper rooftop finials—which haven't set atop the building since before 1980. Along with assistance from Erie County, ECC officials collaborated with Flynn Battaglia Architects, Picone Construction, Grove Roofing, Morris Masonry, and Jens Glass to complete the project.
As noted in the event's program, "the restoration of Erie Community College's Old Post Office Building to its grandeur of the early 1900s epitomizes the definition of adaptive reuse and patient stewardship," After Post Office operations moved elsewhere in 1963, the Gothic Revival-style building—with its mansard roofline, carved exterior gargoyles and 244-foot tower—was open to become home to ECC in 1982. Now, its City Campus Building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and has been gloriously restored to stand tall as one of Buffalo's architectural gems.
Since 1946, Erie Community College has met the needs of a diverse student body while contributing to the economic vitality of Western New York. As a member of the state's SUNY system, the three-campus college provides flexible, affordable and accessible educational programs in an accommodating academic environment. Equipped with the knowledge of these programs, ECC's faculty, staff and students strive to enrich their host communities through skill, service and partnership.