Category Archives: Uncategorized

A message from the PACNY Board of Directors

To our supportive preservation community:

The Board of Directors of PACNY would like to thank our members and colleagues for their support during the current COVID-19 epidemic.

PACNY will continue to serve our five-county region and advocate for the preservation of our irreplaceable cultural heritage.

We wish everyone in our community health and sanity as we continue to manage this unprecedented situation.

Thank you and best wishes,

PACNY Board of Directors

PACNY Supports Community Grid Option for I-81 Project

The Preservation Association of Central New York (PACNY) supports the community grid option for the Interstate 81 viaduct project. This approach best aligns with the organization’s goal of retaining historic buildings and existing urban infrastructure that supports the long-term economic vitality of the city and region.

“PACNY advocates for the preservation and viable use of historic places,” says John Auwaerter, PACNY vice president. “The community grid provides an unprecedented opportunity to increase the viability of historic buildings, streets, and landscapes in our urban core. It is critical to reviving Syracuse’s historic, walkable neighborhoods that have been decimated by failed urban renewal programs and highway construction over the past 60 years.”

In discussing the project options, PACNY rejects the “ReBuild Viaduct Option,” which, because of faster federal highway design standards, would increase the size of the viaduct. It also would require the demolition of 24 additional properties, including at least 12 irreplaceable, historically significant buildings. It would also lead to adverse noise and other environmental impacts across a much broader area that includes many more historic properties, including Oakwood Cemetery. PACNY does not support demolition of historic buildings for highway projects in the city of Syracuse that would destroy our history and lower land values through the center of the urban core.

The planning recommendations of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) CNY I-81 Task Force, changing trends in Federal Highway Administration standards for the future of urban areas, and national Urban Planning and Design “best practices” standards all support the “Community Grid Option” as the best long-term planning option for Syracuse and the Central New York region.


In addition, the “Community Grid Option” comes with a call for the NYSDOT to return the land to the city of Syracuse for redevelopment once the elevated highway comes down. That would enable up to 20-plus acres of former DOT land to be returned to the city for redevelopment, increasing city land values, promoting long-term economic development and growth, improving pedestrian safety, reducing traffic speeds and congestion through urban areas—factors that all contribute to the future viability of Syracuse’s historic urban core. Read full resolution here. 

PASCNY was founded in 1977 and covers Madison, Onondaga, Oswego, Cortland, Cayuga and Oneida counties. The organization is dedicated to the preservation of the historic resources of Central New York that are essential to the cultural and economic well-being of the community. It works independently and in cooperation with other civic organizations and preservation groups to produce and disseminate information on the value of historic preservation throughout the CNY region.


Sacred Sites Weekend Opens with Talk at Manlius Church  

Brennan Stained Glass Studio worked on the recent restoration of windows at Christ Church in Manlius. The church’s oldest stained glass window dates to 1867. Scott Brennan will discuss the project and the windows at a talk 10 a.m. Saturday, May 20, at the church, 407 E Seneca St, Manlius.

At least seven local congregations will participate Saturday, May 20, and Sunday, May 21, in the New York Landmarks Conservancy’s statewide Annual Sacred Sites Open House Weekend. The Preservation Association of Central New York (PACNY) is once again co-sponsoring the event. This year’s theme is Stained Glass: Windows on this World and the Next.

PACNY kicks off the weekend with a 10 a.m. Saturday talk at Christ Church, 407 East Seneca St., Manlius, by Scott Brennan, of Brennan Stained Glass Studios. In “Christ Church’s Stained Glass Treasures,” Brennan and parishioner Robyn Visser will talk about the church’s window restoration project.

Highlights include the 150th anniversary of the placement of the first stained glass window at Christ Church in 1867, the St. Luke window over the altar and documentation that shows at least two of the church’s windows are Tiffany. The talk is free and open to the public.

After the talk, be a tourist in your own town by visiting open houses in Onondaga, Oneida, Madison and Tompkins counties. Central New York sites are among more than 165 open houses statewide. For a complete listing of participating sites statewide visit the Online Weekend Guide at

The annual Open House Weekend has three main objectives:

  • To encourage sacred sites to open their doors to the general public. Inviting visitors is a great way to build broad community support for the ongoing preservation of historic institutions.
  • To inspire residents to be tourists in their own town, introducing non-members to the history, art and architecture embodied in sacred places.
  • To publicize the many programs and services religious institutions offer their neighbors.

“This event is an opportunity for the community to learn about the historic and cultural significance of these landmark buildings, experience the beauty of some of Syracuse’s hidden architectural treasures and understand the challenges in their ongoing preservation,” said PACNY board member John Auwaerter.

Below are details about the Syracuse-area participants.

Saint Marianne Cope Shrine & Museum

601 North Townsend St., Syracuse

Saturday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

Assumption Church

812 North Salina St., Syracuse

Sunday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

Christ Church, Manlius

407 East Seneca St., Manlius

Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

University United Methodist Church

1085 East Genesee St., Syracuse

Saturday 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m.

Grace Episcopal Church

819 Madison St. (414 University Ave.), Syracuse

Sunday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

St. Paul’s Church

310 Montgomery St., Syracuse

Saturday and Sunday 12-4 p.m.

Church of the Saviour

437 James Street, Syracuse

Saturday 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and Sunday 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church

12 1/2 Madison St., Hamilton

Saturday 12-4 p.m. and Sunday 8 a.m.-12 p.m.