COLD SPRING MARKET (On Hold)1304 Jefferson Ave.


ARCHITECTAnthony O. James
PROJECT STATUSUnder Construction

Yaaqob was inspired to relocate to Buffalo from Yemen by his father, who initially came to the United States in the 80’s in hopes of paving the path to a brighter future for his family. In 2011, Yaaqob attended English course and began to study the history of the area. He found the way of life in Buffalo to offer a better environment to raise a family, receive medical care, and enjoy life in general. With now, three small children Yaaqob decided to take the real estate route to secure his livelihood.

Yaaqob owns two properties on the eastside that rent space to local convenient stores. But Yaaqob is interested in more than being a landlord. He participates in community town halls and local business workshops, all in effort to better understand the community needs, explore development opportunities, and increase his contributions to a city that he says “has come together and become more involved” since the recent tragedies. Yaaqob came to Buffalo as a man in a foreign land, but because of his care and concern – Jefferson Ave knows him as family. He would love for his children to take on real estate but he encourages them following their own path.

PLANNING PROCESSProject Development


A Place for Everyday People

Good from the Bad

Visiting the corner store to interview Yaaqob felt like a family reunion. He knew everyone that walked in and those that blew their horns to greet him outside of the store as he posed for a photo. Family is without a doubt one of Yaaqob’s highest values – so much so that he has created a sense of it through his connection to the community.

Another Day

But More than Another Dollar

When asked about the difference between Yemen and Buffalo – it cannot be conveyed in words the feeling of relief and gratitude that washed over Yaaqob’s face…to be in a country that is not war-torn, to be in place where basic civil liberties are not a life or death battle, to be free to speak, learn, and grow. Minority communities still have a ways to go and the struggle to have complete equality is a battleground that still results in life-loss. However, without the experience of daily sprawling violent suppression, the freedoms we do have can be taken for granted. Yaaqob reminds us that there are everyday people that wake up and must literally fight for their lives every single day.

It may “just be a corner store” but from Yaaqob’s perspective it is liberty…it is the promise of freedom, kept.
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Place to Start

Building Wealth from Step One

Yaaqob hopes the reconstruction of the community will attract other property and business owners; thereby turning the neighborhood into a viable business district. When he purchased the building in 2017, it was in need of major repairs. He rolled up his sleeves and made the necessary improvements. This program will help increase the appeal and value of his property, which he looks forward to passing onto his sons.

The End Result…

Will be Better for Us All

The Cold Spring Market project will focus its grant dollars on the exterior of the building with a complete paint makeover, new window system and door, a large full length awning, extensive gooseneck accent lighting, and attractive signage with dimensional lettering.

Project budget: $115,000  Grant amount: $100,000
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CONTACTDo you have
a project in mind?

836 E. Delavan Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14215

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