July Community News

In June, Darren Cotton joined the UDCDA staff as the Director of Community Development and Planning. As a graduate from UB’s School of Architecture and Planning, a resident of the University Heights, board member of the University Heights Collaborative, and volunteer at the University Heights Tool Library, Darren is excited to bring his passion for community-driven change to the new position. Using UDCDA’s available resources and working closely with the housing department, Darren will help plan, coordinate, and implement projects focused on housing rehabilitation, commercial corridor revitalization, and community capacity building. Projects that are currently underway include the restoration of Parkside Candy on Main Street, the rehabilitation of Uptown Theater on Bailey Avenue, and the renovation of Forbachs Flower Shop on Kensington Avenue. Through his experience living, working, and volunteering in University District over the past several years, Darren values the power of partnerships and understands that collaboration is key in addressing many of the pressing issues facing University District. Feel free to get in touch with him at d.cotton@udcda.org