Located at the foot of West Ferry Street on the scenic Niagara River, Freedom Park is steeped in history, most notably as a major terminus of the Underground Railroad between the United States and Canada.
This park was known as Broderick Park until November 2023. The Buffalo Common Council approved a resolution to rename the park to “better tell the story of the Black freedom movement and hard fought civil rights” that are part of the park’s history.
Learn more about the name change in this Buffalo Rising article.
Today, Freedom Park is a popular spot along the water, enjoyed by people for various leisure and recreation opportunities.
The park pays tribute to the people who crossed the water from that point to freedom in Canada and is listed as a designated Network to Freedom site by the U.S. National Parks Service.
Friends of Broderick Park
The “Friends of Broderick Park” group are the stewards of Freedom Park. For over a decade, the Friends of Broderick Park have worked to develop the park into a destination for family, culture and community. Their goal is to restore and transform the park into a welcoming and accessible greenspace that shares its history. Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper is proud support Friends of Broderick Park to amplify the history, enhance the beauty, and encourage our community to enjoy everything Freedom Park can offer.
In 2022, the Friends of Broderick Park unveiled a new mural “The Road to Freedom” by Gino Morrow II, which pays tribute to Harriet Tubman and her journey leading enslaved people north along the Underground Railroad.
Learn more and get involved with the Friends of Broderick Park!
Fishing at the Park
Friends of Broderick Park
City of Buffalo
In 2012, the City of Buffalo and Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, with significant input from Buffalo Quarters Historical Society and Friends of Broderick Park, developed a master plan for the Park that memorializes the unique local history associated with the Underground Railroad.
In 2013 and 2014, the park was renovated to create additional green space, revised parking facilities, an enhanced concession area, an amphitheater and performance plaza, a new family gathering area and shelter, a great lawn and large event space, a contemplative garden, a ‘Freedom Walk’ incorporated throughout the site, and a re-routing of the Riverwalk to create safe separation of activities that enhanced both the popular angling area and the multi-modal trailway on the west side of the park. Learn more by clicking here.
News & Events
Commemoration honoring Ms. Lillion Batchelor (known for staging re-enactments of African-Americans crossing the Niagara River to gain freedom in Canada) and the Buffalo Quarters Historical Society. Also served to rededicate Freedom Park in its newly built amphitheater and refurbished riverwalk. The Underground Railroad Task Force honored Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper’s dedication to Freedom Park as well. With park improvements almost complete, this was great opportunity to see this park activated with an important piece of local history!
Supplemental grant funding allowed Waterkeeper to design and install informational signage at a rich shore fishing spot where many people fish to feed their families. The sign is supplemental to Waterkeeper’s larger fish consumption campaign which consists of multi-language publications and translator-based outreach to help individuals make the best fish consumption decisions for their families and to celebrate our fishery.