Volunteer Clean-Up Set For Saturday, April 16th
A new not-for-profit organization, Renew North Avenue, links businesses, not-for-profit institutions, and government in a coordinated effort to revitalize North Avenue from Eastchester Road to Huguenot Street. Renew North Avenue is similar to a Business Improvement District in its mission and structure, but relies exclusively on voluntary contributions to support its work.
The organization’s first project will be a North Avenue clean-up, scheduled for this Saturday, April 16th (rain date: April 23rd.) Volunteers are asked to meet at 8:30am at McDonald’s at 720 North Avenue, where assignments will be provided. The clean-up itself will run from 9:00am to Noon. In addition to collecting trash, teams may also be deployed to remove graffiti, plant flowers, or refresh public art. Individuals or families can simply show up at McDonalds. Larger groups are asked to call Renew North Avenue’s Executive Director, Hank Bartels, at 914-595-4916, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The formation of Renew North Avenue and Saturday’s clean-up project unfold against the backdrop of good news concerning the long-delayed North Avenue streetscape project. Just this past week, the City received final approval for commencement of the project from the New York State Department of Transportation. The streetscape upgrade, which includes new sidewalks, street trees, pedestrian-scaled lamps, and trash receptacles, should be let to bid this Spring, with construction to commence in the Summer or Fall.
I hope that the initial clean-up effort, coupled with improvements in public infrastructure and education efforts aimed at encouraging better maintenance on the part of business owners, will effect a long-term change in the appearance and business climate of the North Avenue corridor.