716 Transformers: The Landmark Steward

By Nancy J. Parisi

Published on

Monica Pellegrino Faix, Executive Director of Central Terminal Restoration Corporation and a professional optimist, refers to the Terminal’s Art Deco 17-story tower, massive concourse and outbuildings as “an amazing canvas to be working in.” She sees possibilities. Besides being a visionary and steward, Pellegrino Faix is also a strategist, fundraiser, and chief communicator for the sprawling site.

She studied at The School of Architecture and Planning at the University at Buffalo and served as the head of the Richardson Center Corporation for a decade, overseeing the restoration of the National Historic Landmark. “After I worked on the Richardson I went to Alaska for a few years,” she said. “And then early in 2019 somebody reached out to me about the Central Terminal and I thought, ‘that’s a place where I could use my skillset.’ The renovation or rebirthing process is about putting together 100 different pieces of a puzzle that could be put together 50 different ways – and figuring out the right way forward.”

She speaks of creating what she called “a civic commons,” places on the Terminal grounds that will invite people to gather. “We can also talk about things like housing, light manufacturing, and being a place for film productions. My job is to build confidence. The Central Terminal is part of our heritage – physical and emotional. We are flipping the switch from ‘We can’t do it, nothing is happening’ to Something is happening.’”

716 Tips

“I recommend that everyone come to see the Congressman John Lewis mural painted by Buffalo artist Edreys Wajed on the Matt Urban Hope Center. It’s a perfect view of it from here and it’s great.”

Nancy J. Parisi headshot

Nancy J. Parisi

Nancy is a social documentation photographer based in Buffalo, NY.