project leader
Fort Greene/Clinton Hill Open Streets Coalition !
Willoughby Avenue
(Fort Greene & Clinton Hill)
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the project

"We need your help to beautify our Open Street with a new lick of paint on the corner and mid-block Bump-Outs, and to throw a street party, for all ages, to celebrate next spring!"

The WILLOUGHBY AVENUE OPEN STREET in Brooklyn’s neighborhoods of Fort Greene and Clinton Hill runs 8 blocks from Fort Greene Park to Hall Street. This Open Street is used by thousands of people out for a stroll, exercising, walking their dog, riding their bike or scooter, or pushing a stroller. Initial operations were handled entirely by volunteers setting up and taking down barricades each day, in all kinds of weather, creating a website and social media, recruiting volunteers and spreading the word. All while advocating that the City:  1) hire paid workers to manage the maintenance and operations (reduce reliance on volunteer labor) and, 2) make physical improvements to keep the street safe and open for people 24 hours/day instead of the original limited hours of 8am-8pm.

In September 2021 NY City Council funded the Department of Transportation (DOT) to contract with an organization to hire and pay workers to manage the barricades 7/days a week and to keep the street clean. In December 2021, the DOT began making physical "light touch" improvements along Willoughby Avenue to improve safety for pedestrians and bike riders alike, while still allowing vehicles limited local access. The DOT project will be done in a few different phases, with the next round of work slated for sometime in spring/summer 2022. As part of this effort, volunteers in the community are organizing together to make the pedestrian-safety pavement “bumpouts” more visible by painting them a pleasant shade of blue. This "interim paint" will be in place until the DOT returns to make additional changes in 2022. 

Now, the Fort Greene / Clinton Hill Open Streets Coalition wants to celebrate with you, our wonderful neighbors! As the Open Street is now new public space for people we want to create an all-day event in Spring 2022 with activities for people of all age - music, food, and fun. 

the steps

  • Secure approvals from NYC/DOT for paint color and process, December 7, 2021
  • Coordinate volunteers to paint the pavement, December 14, 2021
  • Community Outreach to find out what activities or future design elements people want (art, seating, music etc.), January-February, 2022
  • Event planning and organizing, secure permits, March-April, 2022
  • Spreading the word with promotion and marketing, April-May, 2022
  • All-day event (tbd), late May/Early June, 2022

why we're doing it

Initially created as a response to the Covid pandemic and people’s need for more space to spread out, the Open Street program and Willoughby Avenue Open Street in particular was an instant success with the community. During the height of the pandemic, social distancing was all but impossible even in areas with parks which were frequently crowded. The success of the program motivated the City Council to make it permanent. As part of a seismic shift in thinking about how the city’s streets can be used and benefit the most people, Willoughby Avenue Open Street stands out for its accessibility and the way the community gravitated to it every day. This street is for everyone. More open space draws people out to be together. To exercise. To enjoy the fresh air. And, fewer vehicles makes for safer streets.


Paint:  $1,500

Tools & Equipment:  $1,500

Children's Activities:  $250

Activities for Seniors:  $250

Music / Performers:  $250

ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) $204
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%)
(Donation processing fee does not apply to match funding.)
Donation processing fees apply to donations only. 100% of match funding goes to projects. Please note, fees are estimated here and final numbers may change based on the final amount raised and amount of match funding applied to this campaign.  


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