Building the Hispanic Heritage Cultural Institute: Federal Funds of $1 Million Embark on Promoting Cultural Diversity

The Hispanic Heritage Cultural Institute in Western New York is set to become a landmark in the region, featuring a museum, performing arts theater, event space, cafeteria, media center, learning center, and more. Recently, the construction of this 37,000-square-foot building received a significant boost in funding.

The City of Buffalo allocated $1 million in federal American Rescue Plan funds to support the construction of the institute. As a result, the total federal investment, thanks to the efforts of U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Congressman Brian Higgins, amounted to an impressive $22 million.

Casimiro D. Rodríguez, the president of the Hispanic Heritage Council of WNY, expressed his excitement about the project, stating, “The Institute provides our community the opportunity to tell their stories, and promote and share our history, heritage, and culture. The funding secured by Senator Gillibrand and Congressman Higgins brings us even closer to that goal.”

Gillibrand and Higgins acknowledged the positive impact that the Hispanic Heritage Cultural Institute will have on the West Buffalo corridor, which has already experienced a transformation due to a federal infrastructure investment of over $33 million in Niagara Street.

Gillibrand praised the work of the Hispanic Heritage Council of Western New York, describing it as an exceptional organization that fosters awareness, understanding, and appreciation of the Hispanic community.

In addition to the funding for the construction, federal legislators also presented the Hispanic Heritage Council with a proposal for a new museum at the institute. This proposal includes an official framed copy of the law awarding the Borinqueneers the Congressional Gold Medal, commemorating the service of the US Army’s 65th Infantry Regiment and emphasizing the important role of the WNY Hispanic Heritage Council.

Construction on the Hispanic Heritage Cultural Institute is scheduled to commence during Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from September 15 to October 15. The project is expected to be completed in approximately 18 months.

Gillibrand expressed her enthusiasm for the project and the critical funding it has received, stating, “The Hispanic Heritage Cultural Institute will help further the Hispanic Heritage Council’s mission and provide a welcoming space for the entire community to meet, learn, and rejoice. I am excited to see this project enter the construction phase and I am proud to have worked alongside Congressman Higgins to bring this critical funding to Western New York.”

The efforts to establish the Hispanic Heritage Cultural Institute are a testament to the commitment of the community to preserve and celebrate their history, heritage, and culture. It will undoubtedly become a significant destination for advancing culture, understanding, and opportunity in Western New York.