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The 5 Best Places to Fly a Drone in Buffalo

A list of the best places to fly your drone in Buffalo, New York.

In this article, we’ve scouted out the best places to fly a drone in Buffalo, New York.

If you live in (or are traveling to) Buffalo, please use this page as a resource to better understand not just where to fly, but also where it’s legal and illegal to fly a drone. We provide guidance on regulations to help you stay compliant with both federal and local rules.

fly drone Buffalo

A Sectional Chart of the airspace surrounding Buffalo, NY. Source: VFR Map

Buffalo Drone Laws — Recreational vs. Commercial

The first thing to understand about flying a drone in Buffalo (or any city for that matter) is that under federal FAA regulations, you are either operating recreationally or commercially.

Drone operators are no longer required to independently contact air traffic control when flying within five miles of an airport. Instead, both recreational and commercial flyers can use the automated LAANC system to request airspace authorization to fly in controlled airspace around and above many airports. If you’re operating in Class B, C, D, or E controlled airspace, you’ll need to request airspace authorization. You may do this through LAANC or through FAADroneZone in areas where LAANC is not available.

When we list locations below, we’ll share whether they sit in controlled or uncontrolled airspace.

Get up-to-date airspace information, including temporary flight restrictions, using tools like B4UFLY, Kittyhawk, or Airmap.

Interested in becoming an FAA-certified drone pilot so you can operate under the Part 107 regulations and make money flying your drone? Check out our industry-leading, online training course over at Drone Pilot Ground School.

So those are the federal rules.

But what about local Buffalo drone laws?

Here’s a guide we put together for drone laws in New York. Make sure to consult that to see if there are any local drone ordinances you should follow in Buffalo. When in doubt, use good judgment and follow the FAA’s guidelines.

Note: The content on this page is meant for informational purposes only and is not meant to take the place of legal counsel. If we missed something, or if you have further questions, please send an email to support[at]uavcoach[dot]com, and we’ll do our best to help you out.

Where to Fly a Drone in Buffalo

Alrighty—without further ado, here are our top picks for the best places to fly a drone in the Buffalo area. We selected these locations based on airspace restrictions, accessibility, and attractions. You’ll find that most of the locations we’ve chosen are located in uncontrolled, Class G airspace where you don’t need to request permission to fly. Additionally, we made sure to highlight any locations with designated sUAS/remote aircraft fields.

1 — Lafayette Square

415 Main St, Buffalo, NY 14203

Lafayette Square is located in downtown Buffalo, New York and was named after General Lafayette. The center of the space features a granite Civil War Monument that stands tall above the trees. This park offers a direct line of sight to the Buffalo City Hall building and Niagara Square. The stunning Art Deco building is truly a masterpiece and is one of the largest city halls in the country. It not only set the foundation for Buffalo, but its incredible design influenced the design of the buildings around the city. Drone pilots will enjoy the variety of historic buildings that surround this location.

fly drone Lafayette Square

Source: Jeff Stevens 

2 — Unity Island Park

Buffalo, NY 14207

Unity Island Park is located on the north half of Unity Island in Buffalo, New York. The island itself is 160 acres and separates the Niagara River and the Black Rock Canal. The open green area is ideal for drone pilots who are looking for ample room with breathtaking views of the river and Lake Erie. The International Railroad Bridge also offers unique footage as trains pass through the park from one country to another. It is important to note that Canadian airspace starts just off the West side of the island. Please understand where you are flying at all times and never fly into Canadian airspace.

fly drone Unity Island Park

Source: Google Maps

3 — Red Jacket Riverfront Park

20 Smith St, Buffalo, NY 14210

Red Jacket Riverfront Park is located along the Buffalo River in Buffalo, New York. In recent years, the park has undergone a major restoration. The surrounding area was once one of the busiest industrial centers in the country. The park has a direct view of the massive abandoned Concrete Central building and the abandoned Cargill Grain Elevator building. If you are a drone pilot looking for industrial themed footage, this location is for you.

Concrete-Central (Buffalo NY)

4 — LaSalle Park

Buffalo, NY 14202

LaSalle Park is the largest park along the Niagara River in Buffalo, New York. The property provides unparalleled views of Lake Erie and frequent cargo ships traversing the river. It is also home to the historic Colonel Ward Pumping Station. The massive facility houses five-story high steam pumps that once were responsible for delivering water to the city. Smaller pumps are used today, but the original pumps are still in the building today. The beautiful large red brick facility and its large smoke stack offer great point-of-interest filming opportunities for drone pilots.

Colonel Ward Pump Station

5 — Delaware Park

Meadow Dr, Buffalo, NY 14214

Delaware Park is a large open green space designed by Fredrick Law Olmsted in Buffalo, New York. The designer of the park envisioned a picturesque setting with a lake, a rolling meadow, and mature trees. Hoyt Lake has become a favorite among the park’s visitors and its easy to see why. Stone bridges, lighted cobblestone pathways, and historic buildings add to the character of the park. Drone pilots who are looking for a diverse environment will find that this is the perfect location.

fly drone Delaware Park

Source: Dave Pape

Have Another Place You like to Fly Your Drone in Buffalo?

We hope this list was helpful.

Do you have any other locations in Buffalo where you like to fly your drone?

Let us know in our community forum over here:

https://community.uavcoach.com/topic/6650-where-to-fly-a-drone-in-buffalo/

Take a Drone Flight Training Class in Buffalo

If you’re new to drones or looking to take your flight skills to the next level, we offer hands-on drone flight training in the Buffalo area. Our classes start at 2-hours long, and our expert instructors walk you through what to do before, during and after your flight—you’ll practice intelligent flight modes and learn how to stay safe but also how to get the shots or data you need. During the class, you’ll also get a chance to ask questions about regulations, software, flight operations management, checklists and more.

Sign up for a hands-on drone flight training class in Buffalo.