BUFFALO, NY — Hertel Avenue's revival is no joke.
Backed by a positive Yelp review that ranks North Buffalo as one of the top 10 most-improved neighborhoods in the country, the area continues to enjoy growth of new businesses and opportunities to expand existing ones.
It's also become a big nightlife destination
"It's very very family friendly. We have a lot of ice cream places here, a lot of restaurants here, so it's not a concentration of just bars, " said Joel Feroleto, a Buffalo Common Council member who represents North Buffalo.
It's becoming a top choice for those craving a cold snack. In the past six months alone, Churn, Lake Effect Ice Cream, and Poutine and Cream have all opened on Hertel Avenue.
"Hertel has become the ice cream capital of Western New York, and it's wonderful because so many people come here from all over the area. These ice cream places have a cult-like following, " Feroleto said.
North Park Theatre uniquely contributes to the area. Other Buffalo destinations like downtown area and Elmwood Village don't have a theatre to show off.
And when there's a big premiere, like the kind of gathering North Park hosted for Marshall two weeks ago, surrounding businesses benefit.
"It wasn't that long ago that people were worried whether the North Park Theatre was going to be condemned and torn down," Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said.
Poloncarz, a North Buffalo resident, calls it a strong neighborhood, and says part of Hertel's charm is its walkability.
"You don't often see that as much in the cities anymore — where you can actually walk to retail, you can walk and buy clothes, you can walk and buy furniture, you can walk and buy your groceries," Poloncarz said.
And because of Hertel's popularity, property values in the area are rising.