Real Estate Development
Training Program


The Community-Based Real Estate Development Training (CBREDT) program was developed to provide Buffalo, New York’s East Side community members with the skills and know-how needed to redevelop their own commercial and mixed-use properties. CBREDT is an East Side Avenues program which was originally developed to ensure that land, commercial buildings and mixed-use (residential and commercial use) properties along East Side commercial corridors are improved for productive use in a manner driven by the community. The intent was to build a community of citizen developers equipped to take an active role in revitalizing their neighborhoods. A collaborative group of funders supports this program. 

The CBREDT program began in 2020 and ran for four years. It started as a virtual class due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and shifted to an in-person class in 2023. ​After gathering feedback from participants and key stakeholders, we’ve worked to expand and enhance the program so that it is available to more people and will hopefully result in more completed East Side commercial development projects. The 2024 program features two key components:

  • CBREDT 101: Our free online course features interactive learning modules and three optional in-person experiential sessions. This course is available to anyone who registers, but will focus on reaching East Side residents and stakeholders. The online modules are recorded video sessions that feature seasoned commercial/real estate professionals from Western New York. They provide an overview of the commercial real estate development process, including pre-development, construction management, property management, and financing. Is this course right for you?
  • Pre-Development Coaching Program: Each year, five to ten individuals who have completed CBREDT 101 or graduated from the CBREDT class from 2020-2023 and who own a commercial or mixed-use property with appropriate zoning located on Buffalo, New York’s East Side will be chosen to participate in a structured, hands-on pre-development coaching program. Participants will engage in applied learning workshops on topics such as developing a pro forma; assembling a team; architecture; permits and entitlements; construction; and layering grants and financial assistance. Interested CBREDT graduates/those who have completed CBREDT 101 must apply for the coaching program by August 2, 2024. Participants who participate in the Pre-Development Coaching program may be eligible for funding from Empire State Development. Read more.

Find out more about our programs … 

Information for Past CBREDT Program Graduates

The new online approach will not affect previous CBREDT graduates’ ability to apply for funding or to request technical assistance for their projects. Past graduates are not required to register for or take the online course, but they are welcome to take the class as a refresher if they desire to do so and may apply for the Pre-Development Coaching program if they meet the requirements.


This class is crucial to anyone interested in developing commercial property on the East Side.

Chris Vaughn

I would definitely recommend the program. You just learn so much. All of the different teachers and instructors — they were great. They were very knowledgeable and so helpful.

Verna Hayes

I’m grateful for this program. It would take years to gain the knowledge provided and to understand this entire process. The instructors make it simple, break it down, and are very personable and helpful.

Tara N. McCarter

This training class is a fantastic opportunity to learn the basics of commercial development.

Angelo Threats