Homeowners in the University Heights neighborhood next to University at Buffalo's South Campus are used to a fair amount of partying during the school year. So, when Molly Poremski found a young man peeing in her front yard in broad daylight, on a Wednesday, she, unfortunately, was not surprised.
"No I kind of expect it," she said. "But the response that we have as a neighborhood and the response from the police is so much better than what it has been in the past."
In the three years since Poremski has lived on Winspear Avenue, she has noticed an improvement in the behavior of students living nearby. Part of the reason, she suspects, is the increasingly active Winspear Northrup Block Club.
"It is quieter," Poremski said. "It's pretty quiet. We live in a city. I know there's going to be noise. I know there is going to be people walking by. But when it turns into Bourbon Street that's a problem. And it hasn't been Bourbon Street in a while."
"Things have really picked up [with the block club] and some people have come back that really weren't involved," Linda Kunz, who lives on Northrup Place, explained. "As I said, the core people who live here we really appreciate each other. We like each other."
The two women, along with some neighbors, helped re-energize the block club a couple years ago. Homeowners get to know the students moving in and work with those students and each other to keep it a nice, safe place to live.
Poremski also credited Buffalo Police and District E Chief Carmen Menza for helping improve the neighborhood, especially the last few years.
UB representatives spent Friday morning hanging up information packets on doors in the University Heights neighborhood. Those packets welcome newcomers to the neighborhood and offer reminders to be sure students are behaving responsibly.