project leader
Gwinevere v
517 W. 144th Street
Manhattan (West Harlem/Hamilton Heights)
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the project

West 144th St. between Broadway and Amsterdam is a densely populated block with a mixture of walk-up apartment buildings, large apartment buildings, co-ops, and a few single family brownstones.


For many years, the block was the center of a very active drug trade and gang activity.  However, thanks to the NYPD’s raids and block lockdowns, for a most part the bulk of this activity has moved elsewhere (although the corner of Broadway and 144 remains an issue).   City-run programs such as HPD and HDFC have helped establish a stronger community as well as aided in the diversification of the block.  However, there are still signs of the years of neglect. 

While we made more great strides this year with our Beautification Days in 2010 and 2011, (as well as with the subsequent maintenance of these efforts), there is still a lot of work to be done.  We received 30 additional trees in April 2011, which means we need more supplies (netting to protect the tree beds from garbage, gardening tools, plants) to keep them up.  We previously received grants from the Citizens Committee for NYC, but our past two applications for grants have been denied. We hope that with Ioby, we will be able to continue the forward momentum to build a stronger community and make greater strides in the quality of life here in West Harlem.



the steps

The project is a day-long event (one in May and one in October). The one in May -- we are aiming for May 19 this year -- focuses on flower planting, street furniture painting, and litter removal; the one in October is for mulching the trees for winter, bulb planting, and litter removal. We advertise both to all block residents and apply for a street closure permit for the May event so that more people come out and help.

why we're doing it

As mentioned in the project description above, our block has taken great strides in the past few years: crime has gone down, there are way fewer rats, and the residents are becoming more educated on proper garbage disposal. As the block has become a nicer place to live, the citizens have had increased pride in their block and are helping it become both a safer and greener environment.We simply want to keep the momentum going on this lengthy project.


$500 plants and flowers (purchased via GrowNYC) for May 12 pick up in other to plant at our event on May 19 project total = $500 ioby fee = $40 total to raise = $540


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This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


  • Derek P.
  • Eunhee L.
  • Gwinevere V.
  • Sallie S.
  • Iris Bessell J.
  • Jong Chul L.
  • Bradley M.
  • Adam D.
  • Jake F.
  • Eugenia L.
  • Gwinevere V.