Houghton Conservation Area – Buffalo, NY

The Houghton Conservation Area, locally known as “the fields” or “the woods” includes approximately 24.56 acres along and near the north bank of the Buffalo River. It consists of a large, wooded area with mature trees, numerous paths, and a floodplain forest. Forested floodplains are important components of a healthy riverine system with diverse animal and plant communities. They provide shade to the streams/wetlands, temperature control, stabilize the stream banks with roots, and filter nutrient runoff from uplands. Habitat corridors are also important in that they provide a pathway for wildlife movement, which can link areas of a variety of habitat such as instream, mudflat, wetland, riparian edge, floodplain, and uplands.

Goals / Vision

The vision for the Houghton Conservation Area is to create improved public access, while maintaining the habitat for native vegetation and local wildlife. We hope to engage the community so they can enjoy this Buffalo treasure while helping to restore and preserve the natural ecosystem for generations to come. Public access in the Houghton Conservation Area is currently available but could be improved by establishing a dedicated trail system. As a first step, the BNRLT will hold public meetings to gather input from community members. Stay tuned for details!

Specific goals include:

• Maintaining the land in its open and natural condition, protecting scenic and natural features for birds, fish, and wildlife.

• Providing opportunities for recreational use.

• Limiting development and prohibiting subdivision to protect the existing habitat to conserve and protect these natural resources.


The Houghton Conservation Area is bounded to the north by a Houghton Park parking lot and a succession of non-Park parcels and City Streets, including Spann Street, Fredro Street, Gorski Street, Weiss Street and Weimar Street. The Area generally is situated near or meets residential lots along these streets. It is bound to the south by the Buffalo River, the shoreline of which is a steep embankment.

Project Updates

2022 Progress

An initial public meeting was held on August 24, 2022 to introduce the BNRLT to the Kaisertown community.

View the PowerPoint slides 

See Drone Video of the Conservation Area

Subscribe to the BNRLT mailing list to receive project updates

Review the Conservation Easement Do’s and Don’ts to learn about what can and cannot be done in the conservation area.

2023 Progress

Four public meetings were held between January and April 2023 to gather input from the community regarding improvements they would like to see in the Houghton Conservation Area.

Review the Houghton Engagement Report, which includes outcomes from the meetings as well as input gathered from an online survey.

Diagram of Existing Conditions

Diagram of Visioning Concept

Conservation Area Map

Satellite image of conservation area

Recreational – Conservation Use

The site encourages passive recreational use, such as hiking and viewing of wildlife throughout the pathways. Additional input is being sought from the community regarding potential uses and site amenities.

Project Partners

  • City of Buffalo