In America’s gentrifying urban neighborhoods, it’s not uncommon to see old churches converted into high-priced condos, bars and restaurants.

University at Buffalo preservation planner Ashima Krishna started noticing something different happening in Buffalo. Developers weren’t interested in flipping churches in Buffalo’s East Side, an area struggling with poverty, crumbling infrastructure and abandoned houses. But the East Side has become increasingly popular among Asian immigrants and resettled refugees. These new residents, Krishna noticed, are making creative use of empty churches.

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A 2012 photograph of the Sunrise Church of Christ in Buffalo’s East Side. The building has since been demolished. AP Photo/David Duprey

A new solution for America’s empty churches: A change of faith

Ashima Krishna, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York

In up-and-coming neighborhoods, old churches are often converted to apartments or offices. But what about the vacant or underused churches in areas that aren't attractive to developers?

Science + Technology


Environment + Energy

Health + Medicine

  • How do hospitals know what to do when hurricanes approach?

    Daniel B. Hess, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York

    Even in areas predicted to take direct hits from hurricanes and other storms, hospitals must do all they can to stay open. It isn't an easy task, but preparation and practice help.

Ethics + Religion

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Amazon fires are destructive, but they aren't depleting Earth's oxygen supply


Scott Denning

Colorado State University

Scott Denning

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