Bull's Head Revitalization Project

Bull's Head Revitalization Project

Introduction

The Bull’s Head Revitalization Project represents years of neighborhood-based planning driven by a strong commitment from residents, other stakeholders, and the City of Rochester to catalyze revitalization and redevelopment in Bull’s Head, a community with a prominent history that has experienced significant disinvestment over several decades.  The planning process identified a number of core principles for revitalization, including:   

  • Neighborhood Vibrancy & Sense of Place
  • Safe, Accessible Transportation Systems
  • Employment & Business Expansion
  • Quality, Mixed-Use Development
  • Renewed Housing Opportunities
  • Public Space, Parks & Recreation Enhancements
  • Public Safety & Health Benefits
  • Environmental Restoration

These core principles can be further explored in the following key documents generated during the planning process: 

Bull’s Head Revitalization Plan

Bull’s Head Revitalization Plan Appendices  

Bull's Head Urban Renewal Plan   

Additional background and details regarding the Bull’s Head Revitalization Project are also provided below.

Bull’s Head Redevelopment Vision Plan:  

BH Development Plan 2020 

Background

Bull's Head marks the western gateway to downtown, centered on the convergence of West Main Street, Brown Street, West Avenue, Chili Avenue and Genesee Street. Bull’s Head has been identified by the City as a priority area for neighborhood revitalization. Despite Bull’s Head’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, the area is currently characterized by blighted conditions, a disproportionately high percentage of vacant and/or underutilized buildings and lots, and a significant number of sites with documented and/or suspected environmental concerns.

In 2009, the City undertook a Bull’s Head community input/planning process to bring neighborhood-wide community concerns to the surface as well as to identify potential opportunities to address those concerns. As a part of that process, the City hosted a Bull’s Head Community Design Workshop on September 26, 2009. The workshop was well attended and helped to establish the foundation upon which further revitalization planning for Bull's Head continues.

Bull’s Head Brownfield Opportunity Area

The New York State Department of State’s (NYSDOS) Brownfield Opportunity Areas Grant Program (BOA) provides communities with guidance, expertise and financial assistance, up to 90 percent of the total eligible project costs, to complete revitalization and implementation strategies for neighborhoods or areas affected by brownfieldsThe NYSDOS BOA Program is a 3-step process that enables communities to comprehensively assess existing economic and environmental conditions associated with brownfield blight and impacted areas, identify and prioritize community supported redevelopment opportunities, and attract public and private investment.

In order to best facilitate revitalization planning for Bull’s Head, the City pursued a NYSDOS BOA Step 2 Nomination grant application. For inclusion in and as a prerequisite to the Step 2 application, the City completed a Bull’s Head BOA (BHBOA) Step 1 Pre-Nomination Studybased in part on the 2009 Bull’s Head community input/planning effort. The purpose of the BHBOA Study was to develop viable brownfield strategies, to build on existing community assets and recent redevelopment successes, and ultimately, to create job opportunities leading to area-wide revitalization. Over 60 potential brownfield sites were identified within the proposed BHBOA boundary and the findings of the Study clearly illustrated the need for more planning and analysis towards redevelopment in the area.

The City subsequently received award of the $284,745 BOA Step 2 Nomination grant. The objective of the BHBOA Step 2 project was to create and implement a revitalization plan to reposition Bull’s Head as a vital community with enhanced job/business opportunities, quality housing and improved public amenities. The BHBOA Step 2 grant enabled the City to complete the nomination phase activities including: collecting additional data; identifying market conditions, and evaluating future development potential; and completing a Bull’s Head community revitalization plan. Continued community engagement was a key component of the BHBOA Step 2 planning process.

Participation in the NYSDOS BOA Program seeks to help to stimulate further investment in the neighborhood and provide important information to assist in bringing new businesses, residents and employment as well as improved public amenities such as transportation infrastructure. 

Project Purpose and Overview

The BHBOA Step 2 process resulted in a revitalization plan for the over-all study area. The plan is being utilized as a guide to advance subsequent BHBOA Step 2 and Step 3 efforts to reposition Bull’s Head as a vital and thriving community with a renewed sense of identity. The revitalization plan identified strategic sites within the study area where more detailed analyses and site-specific revitalization planning is warranted. 

Community Engagement

The BHBOA Step 2 planning process included on-going community engagement with multiple venues for public input and information sharing. As the project advanced, project-related public forums were announced and advertised in an effort to maintain a high level of community involvement. Continued community involvement was critical to ensuring that the planning process was successful and that the revitalization plan reflected a community supported vision. The Community Participation Plan provides general guidelines for community engagement during the planning process.

A Project Advisory Committee (PAC) met periodically throughout the project to assist with input on the various project components as they were addressed. PAC meeting presentations and summaries as well as other project-related materials were made available to the public on this webpage and in hardcopy format at the following location:

Monroe County Library System - Arnett Branch Library
310 Arnett Boulevard, Rochester, NY 14619
585-428-8214
For hours of operation, please call the branch or visit the branch webpage

Bull's Head BOA Designation

To view the Bull’s Head BOA Designation announcement by the New York State Department of State click here>>> 

Project Materials for Review

 PAC Meeting #1 (December 7, 2016)  

PAC Meeting #2 (June 22, 2017) 

 PAC Meeting #3 (August 22, 2018)  

 PAC Meeting #4 (June 17, 2019)  

PAC Meeting #5 (November 25, 2019)   

Public Meeting #1 (July 27, 2017)  

 Public Meeting #2 (September 6, 2018)   

Public Meeting #3 (June 26, 2019)    

Bull's Head Urban Renewal Planning Process

Rochester City Council approved the Bull's Head Urban Renewal Plan on July 24, 2018.  Click the link below to review a copy of the approved plan: 

Bull's Head Lead Developer Selection Process

In July 2020, the City of Rochester issued a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) seeking a Lead Developer for the Bull's Head Targeted Redevelopment Area (see Vision Plan above). A Lead Developer has been selected and will be announced by the City on May 20, 2021.

Questions

If you have questions about the project or would like more information, please contact:

Rick Rynski
Associate Administrative Analyst
Neighborhood and Business Development Department
City of Rochester
585-428-6932
Rick.Rynski@cityofrochester.gov