New Economy Tours

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Guided tours of Buffalo will take place on Saturday afternoon from 2 PM - 4 PM and will be by bus. Attendees may purchase tour tickets online in advance of the conference; tickets are $5 per person. There are 30 seats on each tour bus; tour spots will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis and are likely to fill up. Because they are running concurrently, each person may only sign up for 1 tour. Please contact Tori at tori [at] with any questions.


Tour #1 - Development Without Displacement

The Community First Alliance (CFA), comprised of a diverse array of stakeholders, including Fruit Belt residents, entrepreneurs, social and economic justice advocates and labor leaders, is currently leading a campaign to negotiate a Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) with the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC), ground zero for current economic development in the region. The CFA has been a champion for “high road” economics that put people and neighborhoods first. It’s important that Buffalo has a comeback for all, not just the few. If you care about rents going up, come on this tour. If you care about strategies to create economic opportunity without displacement, come. If you want to know what decision-making at the local level looks like, come.  If you want to see and support longtime residents of one of Buffalo’s most historic and diverse neighborhoods, come.

Tour #2 - Green Development Zone

Green Development Zone (GDZ) is a place-based initiative focused in a 25-block district on Buffalo’s West Side. Renewable energy projects, green housing rehabilitation, urban farming and green infrastructure installations have transformed over 200 parcels within the zone. Projects in the Zone have generated more than 100 living wage jobs accessible to neighborhood residents in a range of sectors and have reduced carbon emissions by approximately 155 Metric Tons of CO2 annually. The Zone has gained worldwide attention as a model of building community wealth and power while reducing the carbon footprint through intensive interventions through energy efficiency and renewables.

Stops include: Massachusetts Avenue Project, The WASH Project, Net Zero House, Mass Ave Park, School and more!

Tour #3 - New Economy Tour of Tonawanda

Across the country the energy economy is shifting. Coal fired plants are closing due to lack of growth in electricity demand and noncompetitive prices. As a result of this shift, there are impacts to private and public sector jobs, and the communities where these plants are located.   The tour will include a visit to a coal fired power plant in the decommissioning process, and demonstrate a joint campaign built between a local environmental justice organization and organized labor in response to the retirement.