3.4 Performance Measures

Specific, objective and quantifiable performance measures must be established so that the City and others can determine if Buffalo is making progress toward achievement of the Comprehensive Plan goal, and to inform choices about adjustments to the plan on a continuing basis.

The Office of Strategic Planning should monitor and measure how the plan is implemented, both in terms of the plan’s economic, social and environmental impacts and in terms of land use, housing targets, investments made and development achieved.

A useful array of performance measures has already been developed as part of the Queen City Hub: Regional Action Plan for Downtown Buffalo. Many of these can be adapted for the Comprehensive Plan to minimize the considerable workload involved in applying these measures consistently and regularly. The State of the Region indicators developed by the Institute for Local Governance and Regional Growth should also be assessed for use in this regard. City Departments and agencies should be requested to report achievements against targets on a timely basis.

Key performance measures should be monitored at multiple levels – the Planning Community, City, County, and MSA or regional. It is important for the City’s leaders to know not only how the various parts of the city are faring, but also how Buffalo is doing in relation to the County and the region. OSP should have the comprehensive ability to make those comparisons.

At a minimum the performance measures should track: 

  • Land use

  • Housing targets 

  • Development changes (by neighborhood) 

  • Investments 

  • Population 

  • Employment 

  • City services 

  • Environmental and energy targets

If the Comprehensive Plan is to be both effective and a truly “living document” continuous monitoring of performance measures is critical. We cannot measure our progress or correct our course if we don’t have the kind of information provided by effective performance measures.