West Side Sustainable Communities Develops 9 point plan!

Over 40 West Side Community Organizations gathered together on Saturday June 5th to present a 9 point plan developed by community residents for neighborhood revitalization 5-YEAR COORDINATED HOUSING PLAN ����������� Project Goals: 1. Generate and implement a 5-year coordinated housing plan among the various housing development organizations on the West Side, including: Combined market data and trend analysis Explanation of each housing development organization and the housing projects they are working on over the next 5 years. Action Step: Complete draft plan by October 1st. 2. Increase access to quality, affordable housing and prevent displacement through Homebuyers Clubs, increased tenant and landlord education efforts, and eliminating barriers which restrict groups according to their primary language or income. ENTREPRENEURIAL SUPPORT ����������� Project Goals: 1. Increase our capacity as organizations to provide start-up support to entrepreneurs. Action Step: Meet with Senator Antoine Thompson on June 25th to gain his assistance with: → Identifying or establishing an ombudsman within City Hall to assist entrepreneurs through the permitting process. → Promoting City-led strategic planning for small business development, including market analysis and increasing the availability of micro-lending. 2. Provide continued support to entrepreneurs by patronizing their businesses. GRANT-FERRY COMMERCIAL GATEWAY ����������� Project Goals: 1. Re-design this important commercial district node to highlight positive economic activity and provide opportunity for greater small business development. Action Step: Bring together key stakeholders in the area, especially property owners and nearby residents. 2. Create stronger connections between nearby residential areas, the Mass Ave Park, and the Grant-Ferry commercial district through streetscape and traffic pattern improvements. HEALTHY FOOD ACCESS ����������� Project Goals: 1. Increase patronage of the Growing Green Mobile Market�s fresh healthy food Jericho Road Ministries, Santa Maria Towers and the Growing Green Urban Youth Farm. Action Step: Door-to-door outreach by Growing Green Summer youth and interns around Mobile Market sites. 2. Assessment of corner stores and residents to identify needs and opportunities to carry more healthy foods in corner stores. Action Step: UB Planning Department designs survey for Growing Green Summer youth to conduct and issues report based on findings. 3. Provide education to residents about growing organic food at home, on vacant lots, and in community gardens. 4. Gather community input for increasing neighborhood-based healthy food and active living options through policy. Action Step: Coordinate visioning meetings with residents this summer to identify policy goals. NEIGHBORHOOD LITERACY ����������� Project Goals: 1. Share resources and help organizations looking to create literacy programs. Action Step: Bring additional partners together, beginning with a meeting at West Side Community Services on June 21st at 9:30 am. 2. Develop and implement a streamlined referral system for those in need of literacy/ESL services. 3. Coordination with service learning institutions to manage a broader volunteer intake to staff literacy programs. SCHOOL 18 NEIGHBORHOOD INVESTMENT ����������� Project Goal: Leverage the strong community-based programming inside School 18 together with the physical improvements soon being made by the Buffalo Board of Education to stabilize and enhance the surrounding area. Action Step: Formalize agreement between the City of Buffalo and project partners to build school garden at 125 Hampshire Street. SCHOOL 30 NEIGHBORHOOD INVESTMENT ����������� Project Goal: Generate and implement a community plan for vacant property reuse in the area, by leveraging recent physical investment in School 30 through the Joint Schools Reconstruction work. → Improve streetscape and traffic flow at the Five Points intersection to better suit the needs of residents and business owners. → Connect existing neighborhood resources in the immediate area (Loretto Ministry Center, community gardens, local businesses, etc.) with the School 30 building and community. Action Step: Hold a School 30 Neighborhood Planning Meeting in the fall to gather parents, students, teachers, and residents� ideas for development-based solutions to area problems. WEST SIDE YOUTH PARTNERSHIP ����������� Project Goals: 1. Sharing information among members of the Partnership about what�s available to youth. → Connecting engaged youth with additional resources. → Coordinating outreach efforts to disengaged youth. Action Step: Create a seasonal directory of programs and services offered by Partnership members. Action Step: Encourage every organization working with and serving youth on the West Side to become an active Partnership member. 2. Determining holes in services and programs currently offered, according to the needs of youth on the West Side, and identifying collective resources to fill those holes. 4. Bridging any gaps which may exist between West Side youth organizations and larger entities like the Buffalo Public Schools. YOUTHBUILD ����������� Project Goal: To train an increasing number of at-risk young adults in the building trades on local construction sites and to empower them as leaders of a movement to bring good green jobs to West Side residents. Action Step: Placement of YouthBuild trainees in college programs, paid employment, or apprenticeships, including connecting four trainees with living wage jobs in a weatherization pilot program.