Buffalo's "Blank Snow" Park

By Diana Budds
A few weeks ago, the possibility of snow at sea level here in the San Francisco Bay Area raised quite a stir. Will it? Won't it? Should we ready our toboggans and show shoes? Nary a flake has fallen in SF since the seventies and only some of the upper elevations received a dusting in the wee hours of the morning (and surely more than a few hopes of waking up to a winter wonderland were dashed). In the northeast where feet—and not just flakes—of snow are the norm, Sergio López-Piñeiro, an architecture professor at the University of Buffalo, has spent the winter working with a local parks conservancy to plow the snow in the parking lot of the Frederick Law Olmstead-designed Front Park into a giant polka dot pattern. His celebration of the season transforms a "nuisance" into something quirky and beautiful, creating a more vibrant city. Here's López-Piñeiro on the design's backstory:

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