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Benjamin Bidell, Ph.D. Student

Benjamin Bidell is a part-time Ph.D. student in the University at Buffalo Department of Geography.  He is also a full-time Senior Planner in the Niagara County Department of Economic Development, a member of the American Planning Association, and a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.


Benjamin uses his background in urban and regional planning, environmental design, and geographic information systems (GIS) to analyze the physical, social, and economic characteristics of regions.  His past professional work has involved overseeing development of GIS applications to track and analyze county planning board projects, brownfields sites, and businesses; using GIS to analyze community and site characteristics to support economic development efforts; and overseeing development of a countywide, parcel-based suitability analysis for land development.  He served as project coordinator for the Niagara Communities Comprehensive Plan and has been actively involved in the Niagara County Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy, Erie-Niagara Framework for Regional Growth, WNY Regional Sustainability Plan, Niagara Frontier Urban Area Freight Transportation Study, and other regional planning efforts.  Benjamin is a meticulous problem-solver who achieves results through best practices, sound research, cutting-edge information technologies, and data analytics.


Research interests:

  • Applications of GIS for urban and regional analysis
  • Use of GIS to model land development scenarios and measure community impacts
  • Development of models to measure resiliency to disasters and extreme events
  • Use and development of multi-agency regional geographic information systems
  • Spatial analysis incorporating large-scale 3D urban models
  • Social media as a frontier for geospatial information



  • Master’s (Urban Planning), University at Buffalo, 2006
  • Bachelor’s (Environmental Design), University at Buffalo, 2003


More about Benjamin
on LinkedIn