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Niagara Falls Community Development announces PB 360 vote winners

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Wed, Sep 26th 2018 04:50 pm
Residents choose projects to improve their neighborhoods
Voting for year two of the City of Niagara Falls Department of Community Development's participatory budgeting initiative, titled "PB 360," came to a close on Sept. 14.
This year's "PB 360" asked city residents what public space improvements they wanted in three selected neighborhoods of the city: North End, Middle Pine and South End. Residents provided their initial ideas through six "idea sessions" held in June. Those ideas were then narrowed to ballot items that were put to public vote at more than 30 voting opportunities throughout the summer months.
"Residents are experts in their communities," said Seth Piccirillo, director of Community Development. "This process highlights that resident expertise and builds a program that will yield results for years to come."
The only requirement to vote was residency in Niagara Falls. Each voting resident was able to vote for up to three of the 16 proposed projects. With 304 voting residents, the full results are as follows:
North End - Grove Street to Beech Ave, 9th Street to 15th Street
•Community Center Request for Proposals (RFP) - 160 votes
  • Exterior Home Improvement Grant - 67 votes
  • Graffiti Wall Art - 65 votes
  • Underground Railroad Monument - 64 votes
  • Historical & Cultural Public Art - 40 votes
  • D'Amelio Fence & Crosswalk Paint - 35 votes
The community center RFP will be funded at $120,000. These funds could potentially be used for acquisition, rehab and operation costs, depending on the details of the proposals received. The Department of Community Development will create a request for qualifications that will be released on Monday, Jan. 7, 2019. This RFQ will allow time for community members to create or build capacity within an organization before submitting an application to a formal RFP, which will be released following the conclusion of the RFQ process.
Middle Pine - Ferry Ave to LaSalle Ave, 17th Street to 24th Street
•Blight Clearance - 54 votes
  • Exterior Home Improvement Grant - 47 votes
  • Targeted Street Cleanups - 42 votes
  • Bike Repair Station - 42 votes
  • Pride Flags for Pine Ave - 30 votes
  • Power Box Public Art - 21 votes
Blight clearance will be funded at $120,000. These funds will be used for demolition of properties that pose a safety risk, as well as a negative visual impact on this neighborhood.
South End - Niagara Street to Pine Ave, 4th Street to 8th Street
•Exterior Home Improvement Grant - 63 votes
  • Blight Clearance - 53 votes
  • Public Art Garbage Cans - 47 votes
  • 8th Street Pock Park Improvements - 33 votes
Exterior home improvement grants will be funded at $120,000. Homeowners in the South End neighborhood will be able to apply for funding to assist in exterior home repairs starting Monday, Jan. 7, 2019. Applicants will be screened by Community Development staff for program eligibility and conditions of their properties.
CD staff will continue to develop program guidelines in the coming weeks to ensure compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. Work on these homes is expected to begin in spring of 2019.
Additional information can be found online at nf-cd.org/pb360.

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