Brainstorming Ideas for the West Side in 2015

Hey Neighbors!
Last year we accomplished SO MUCH and the West Side is improving because of the hard work from the people who live here who extended a helping hand.  We have raised $157,000 to upgrade Heberlig Palmer Park so those plans will continue to be coordinated by Parks and Recreation with guidance from us this year.

There are plenty of smaller projects the neighbors could work on to continue improving other areas.  We thought we would throw out some ideas and hope that you will share some as well.  We certainly can’t accomplish everything but it would be great if we could agree on a smaller project or 2 that the neighbors could work on this year.  Some projects could be accomplished only by residents coming together but others might need approval or coordination with borough officials.  It would be great if we could find some projects that neighbors could accomplish on our own so things would move along a little faster than having to create formal plans that require approval from the borough.

Neighbors helping Neighbors

If we could get a group of people to commit to helping occasionally, we could see if there were one off projects that would help the people who live directly in our community.

  • People could submit projects they could use a extra hand to accomplish
    • painting (fences/porches/garages)
    • Landscaping (dig a garden, plant trees/flowers/vegetables, Mulching)
    • Washing Dirty Siding
  • Other neighbors donate/lend supplies
    • Extra paint, tools to accomplish task for the day, expertise
    • Truck to deliver mulch, rototiller to dig up for a garden
  • Set up a NextDoor neighborhood so neighbors could contact neighbors directly and post. Only visible for people in our neighborhood.
  • Set up a Tool Lending Library for neighbors.  This could either be finding a way to connect neighbors to each other who have tools to share or setting up a central location where people could check tools out (like a library) http://localtools.org/

Sprucing up public spaces

  • Spring Spruce Up-Heberlig Palmer Park (last weekend in March again?)
    • Rake leaves, plant perennials, mulch, install rain barrels, plant garden plot
  • Neighborhood Clean Up (Mid/late April usually)
    • All neighbhorhood groups in Carlisle coordinate a day to clean up our areas. Litter clean up, unclog drain grates and mulch/weeding tree wells
  • Look for more community garden opportunities.  Connect with neighbors who otherwise wouldn’t have a space to grow but is interested in gardening.
  • Transforming chain link fences through cross stitch (Memorial Park?)
  • Repainting crosswalks for safety and vibrancy
    • This would have to be approved by the borough before moving forward.
    • Isolate crosswalks that are faded and/or highly trafficked and need painting/cross walk sign.
      •  W. Penn/College St-John’s restaurant
      • Lincoln/College St. -Student cross walk for Bellaire/Wilson)
      • G st./Spring Rd – student crosswalk for Hamilton
      • Memorial Park area
      • B st./Franklin st (by gas station-Student Crosswalk Bellaire)
    • If people are interested, we could see if there could be approval to install a creative crosswalk/intersection to show a certain intersection is a neighborhood center where people congregate. Possibly one installed as a pilot to see if it could work using something non-permanent (chalk/temporary spray paint) if people are concerned about the idea.
  • Anti-Litter Campaign
    • Our neighborhood is often a place where litter is found along our sidewalks.  Rather than looking to the borough to create a campaign, let’s look at options that might work for our specific neighborhood.  It could be just a poster campaign but could also include creative garbage can designs to encourage more usage, educating children, working with businesses and orgs in the area.

Neighborhood Needs Inventory/Walking Audit

  • tree placeA walking audit is usually a guided walk through a community to take inventory of what works and what could be improved and how to improve it.  The West side is a big place so it might be hard to agree on one area to start with but that is an option. Another way would be to have people from all over our community submit things that they think could be improved and what they would recommend to achieve it.  These improvements would be things in the physical landscape of the community. (Mt Holly completed a walking audit downtown last year)
    • Sidewalks that are raised/broken/impassable
    • Curbs that are not ADA/Wheelchair/stroller accessible
    • Properties that are litter strewn, un-maintained, overgrown with weeds
    • Empty tree wells, overgrown with weeds
    • Sidewalks/blocks that could use a tree/tree well installed (things like this could be posted directly on the sidewalk so even those who couldn’t attend the walk could see that ideas for improvement are being generated)
    • Crosswalks in need of repainting

Events Ideas

  • Neighborhood Yard Sale(s)
    • This could be a community wide sale or it could be centrally located at HP Park
  • Neighborhood Potluck Picnic
    • HP Park – Everyone can bring a dish to share and we could have a fun family friendly afternoon in the neighborhood
  • Game nights in HP Park
    • Coordinate weekly or monthly game nights in the park. Bring your own board games, field games, anything you can play
  • Food Truck Rally at Tire and Wheel Site
    • This is one that would take much more coordination with the borough and owner of the property and it might not be able to happen at all.  The idea is that the space is a future area for redevelopment and it would give people the opportunity to again see the space as a destination and a place to support businesses.  It would also take advantage of the recent ordinance change to allow food trucks in the borough.  This would be a one day only event.
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