project leader
Robert E
7625 1st Avenue North
(East Lake)
latest update rss
No updates yet.

the project

In October of 2015, stakeholders in the East Lake Commercial District of Birmingham, AL transformed a gravel parking lot created by the demolition of a mid-block building in the neighborhood’s historic commercial district into a community gathering space. Volunteers used donated construction equipment to scape the gravel lot down to the original foundation pad, laid landscaping stone to create a retaining wall, built planters out of pallet wood left over from a previous project, painted the walls of the adjacent building with donated paint, strung outdoor lights, painted donated iron outdoor furniture and even constructed a circular fireplace. What was once an overgrown, underused lot is now a gathering space for customers of adjacent businesses (one of which is a coffee shop).  

Now it’s time to take that space to the next level! Plans call for refurbishing the pallet planters, constructing a stage, installing electrical outlets to make power available at ground level, adding furniture and most importantly, programming the space with live music, container retail and food trucks, and art shows that will give residents and visitors alike more entertainment and food options and help support local businesses, artists and performers. 

This is a volunteer-driven project: whether you live, work or play in East Lake or just want to get involved with the community, this is a great opportunity to help bring vibrancy on of Birmingham’s unique neighborhood commercial district.  

the steps

  1.  March 14-22 ioby Fundraising campaign
  2. June 16-30 Volunteer-led, improvements to the courtyard (build stage, install electricity at ground level, replant pallet planters, add signage, source and refurbish outdoor furniture. 
  3. July-Aug, and eight-week develop programming and marketing for the courtyard (recruit artists, musicians, food trucks, container retail, etc). 
  4. Sept 2, 2017 - Oct 14:  Six consecutive Saturday events.

why we're doing it

The East Lake Commercial District is actually two distinct nodes. East Lake Station includes several retail storefronts that serve both destination shoppers and nearby residents. The East Lake Station courtyard will serve as an attractive gathering space for both residents and visitors of different cultures and income groups to come together to enjoy a variety of events. At present, there is not a comparable outdoor space available in East Lake. 


Disbursed Budget (7.7.17):

With the funds raised, we're going to start with plants, paint and the stage = $650

Signage = $137.38

RAISED = $846.00
 less ioby Platform Fee  $35.00
less ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $23.62

Original Budget:

Electrical installation $650 

Stage construction – lumber, screws, nails $350 

Paint for furniture – $100 

Plants $200 

Programming for six weeks 

Performer fees: $2000 

Marketing (signage, advertising): $1200 

Total project cost: $4500 

Project Subtotal =  $4,500
ioby Platform Fee  $35
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $135
Total to Raise on ioby = $4,670



Sorry, but this project doesn't have any updates yet.


This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


  • Hugh & Marygray Hunter
  • Patty A Pilkerton
  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous
  • Vince Amaro
  • Amanda L.
  • Robert Emerick