People’s Voice Edition: The Fall and Rise[?] of Old Falls Street

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The Fall and Rise[?] of Old Falls Street


Stan Zimmerman:

“And yet the citizens continue to elect incompetent leaders that continue that downward spiral, a 3 month tourist season cannot support a 12 month budget , the time has come for a control board to come in before it is too late!”


Anthony Jones:

“It’s already too late. These solutions are all false hope. The crime and carelessness here would never allow us to be even a percent of what we used to be. In other words you can polish a turd till it sparkles. Doesn’t change the fact it’s a turd.”


Michael Svida:

“Very poor leadership / no planning what’s so ever / and no vision.

I remember very clearly when falls street was like the above photo. The city’s problems begin when New York state took control of the electricity, New York state power authority and then took our waterfront for the parkway and directed tourist traffic to park in the state parking lot (hijacking tourist dollars) that would otherwise be spent in the falls street area, etc.

Another factor is Niagara falls industry suffered also because all of these factories stopped receiving cheap electricity because the power authority was under New York state control instead of Niagara falls, also the DEC was formed and putting policy’s in place because of pollution and more factories started to close, etc.

The convention center idea came from mayor lackey along with urban renewal and the city started to eminent domain properties, before long falls street and surrounding areas we’re demolished and the whole area looked like the Mojave desert, flat with nothing there.

The convention center was built but nothing else to support it, than the Hilton was built (now the Sheraton) but that actually didn’t support it because people had to book rooms in Niagara Falls Ontario or buffalo to attend a convention in Niagara Falls.

The point I’m trying to make is this city didn’t have a plan and figure that if we build it they will come, the city build the convention center but nothing to support the convention center. Before the construction of the convention center city planners we’re supposed to have in place at least 4 hotels, shopping and activities to support visitors (guests and their families).

50 years later we still don’t have a plan and New York state is purchasing properties as we speak under the assumption of development, but who is the development going to benefit? The city of Niagara falls? Or NY state parks? The personal ATM of NYS.”


Enzo Luciani:

“Lackey and his lackeys destroyed this city. a guy from Oklahoma who thought he knew what was best for us natives.”


Dan Dusher:

“Unfortunately politicians for many years thought they could generate more money by “modernizing” the city. The closing of falls street for the convention center, the building of the winter garden, and the urban renewal efforts into the 1980’s were all well intentioned, but clearly mistakes were made.

Main Street was a popular business area also, and I can remember shopping at the old Biers store before it was closed, the smell of the oil in the basement and the tunnel that ran across the street to a building that had been raised and replaced with what was the Hilton at the time (now the Sheridan). Shopping on Main Street for shoes at Howard’s and the multiple buildings that Jenss had for shopping, all with multiple floors of shopping.

Main Street didn’t die because of urban renewal though, it died because of the Summit Mall.

We can’t recreate the old Falls Street. The conference center and Sheridan are in the way of that happening, and the best we could hope for at this point would be shops that could be a mixture of tourist ones mixed in with year round places of business that would be popular with locals as well as tourists.

Still waiting to see the big investments that NFR will be making. Purchasing and tearing down buildings does not count.”


Tammy Wable-Santos:

“Growing up in the 60’s, this city just wasn’t for the tourist, it was OUR downtown! We shopped in all the stores. Ate in the restaurants, morning lunch and dinner. We traveled the same streets to get home or go to work. That is what I want my city to become once again. Today, I hate driving thru the city, it is so depressing.”


Debbie Shaughnessy:

“I love our old city we had so much to do then. $5 would get you into the movies and eat and drink cherry coke at Mr. S on Old Falls Street and a bus back to the Town of Niagara every Saturday.”


Dan Baldwin:

“What a shame, corruption and wanna be Politicians lining their own pockets led to the downward spiral of Niagara Falls. All the families that lived here for the good jobs are gone. The jobs are gone and so are the people. Niagara Falls is sinking and will continue to sink until there’s not enough people living here to even call it a city. Welcome to the Town of Niagara Falls! Head over the border and see what true prosperity is!”


Dan Davis:

“The Urban Renewal Plan was doomed to failure. They took what was hundreds of individual businesses over a 5 city block area and turned it into masses of Concrete and Glass nothingness.

AND they STILL haven’t learned!!!”

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