6% Place

4 September 2012

And now we are getting on with it. With the help of $49,350 awarded to the Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation by the Heinz Endowments and the energy of our newly-formed 6% Place committee, we are building the 6% Place.

The Heinz Endowments supports efforts to make southwestern Pennsylvania a premier place to live and work, a center for learning and educational excellence, and a region that embraces diversity and inclusion.

We’re excited. We’re rolling. Watch for updates!

29 August 2012

the first meeting of the 6% place advisory committee

The 6% Place Advisory Committee met for the first time last Wednesday. Made up of creative workers, Garfield residents, and potential neighborhood in-comers, this feisty group will steer the implementation of the 6% Place, including the first-ever Garfield Creative Census, strategizing about the reuse of an empty school in Garfield, and other future projects.

Want to be a part of the committee? Know someone who does? Let us know at info@citylabpgh.org.

28 August 2012

cityLAB’s 6% Place book is now available for your e-reader!

Buy it for your Kindle, Nook, and iPad, or buy a beautifully-bound copy of the book here. And you can still download the book for free here. Happy reading!

13 June 2012

Save the date! Eve Picker, cityLAB’s intrepid CEO, will be a panelist at a discussion on low-income neighborhoods and how they participate in regional economies, including their untapped market potential, at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland’s Pittsburgh branch on June 20th. Eve will be giving a presentation on cityLAB’s 6% Place experiment — find more about the event here and register for it here.

Connecting to Markets Series:
Exploring Low-Income Neighborhoods in the Regional Context

Wednesday, June 20, 2012, 11:00-3:30pm

Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, Pittsburgh Branch
717 Grant Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15219

We hope to see you there!

(The event is sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland and the Pittsburgh Partnership for Neighborhood Development.)

UPDATE 6/21/12: See a photo from yesterday’s event here.

14 March 2012

In late February, cityLAB toured the empty Rogers School building in Garfield with a group including representatives from the Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation, the Garfield Jubilee Association, and two artists who work on Penn Avenue. Built in 1914 and used as a school until 2009, the Rogers School building is very big, beautiful, and uncannily quiet.

Click here to see some photos from our visit.

12 March 2012

A quick update about our 6% Place experiment:

Since the new year, we have been working with CMU’s Urban Design Build Studio to make sure that the students’ work on the 6% Place incentives is ready to show to potential funders, planning a strategy for the 6% Place with the Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation and UDBS, and meeting with potential funders to get some of our 6% Place projects off the ground.

We hope to have good news to share soon!

27 February 2012

On Friday, The Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation held a ground-breaking ceremony for forty-five new homes in Garfield. As this article in the Post-Gazette describes, this effort is the “last leg of a decade-long, $24 million scattered-site effort that has coincided with a 45 percent drop in crime” in the neighborhood.

Read more about the BGC’s efforts and Garfield residents’ reactions here and here.

photo via Marquette University’s Flickr stream

10 January 2012

cityLAB recently received an email from a long-time Pittsburgher who now lives in Harare, Zimbabwe. He writes:

Dear Garfield Neighbors,

Please find my contribution to your community creating its future: Invest. Brand. Plan.

Good luck with the process!

Mike Staresinic
Harare, Zimbabwe
Pittsburgh from 2012

Garland Clubs. Recovery takes time. Start small start now: combine joined parcels for gardens, greenways, community vegetable gardens and the like, as a viable investment strategy to attract neighborhood investment clubs. For the price of acquisition, tax, fencing, and some weed whacking, each patch of green neighborhood pulls the rest up. Over time, the surroundings come up due to these Garlands. As new housing picks up, it has green neighbors. Those who hold the green get their investment back as a neighborhood develops around them (eventually selling or developing their land), while residents walk the garlands  in an upcoming, natural, strengthening neighborhood. I am prepared to organize the first Garland Club.

Garland Brand. Garfield needs a new brand. Named for an inconsequential President who nobody remembers (quiz: ask meeting participants for that president’s first name), please play with options: 25% Garland. Gardens. 20% vacant can be readily made into a wonderful number when it = 25% FREE, 25% SPACE TO BREATHE, 25% NATURAL 25%. Natural material is the neighborhood’s natural strength. Pump it up to 25% Garlanded Garfield.

Holistic, Full-Cycle Planning. Pittsburgh should not be proud of its speed of demolition, rather speed of redevelopment. Figuring out the full cycle before buildings unfortunately go down transforms demolition from a loser into a winner.

Thanks for contributing your ideas, Mike!

view of Harare by Flickr user Simon Kelly

3 January 2012

cityLAB’s 6% Place book has been written up in the Bloomfield-Garfield Bulletin. In the article, Rick Swartz, executive director of the Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation, says, “The book is an impressive piece of work that should fuel conversation and planning discussions for years to come.”

Read the article below and read more of the January issue of The Bulletin here.

Thanks to the Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation and to The Bulletin for their support and for the mention.

21 October 2011

The new Pittsburgh CONNECTS Lab in Garfield has a series of great workshops coming up, including sessions on computer and software training, free computer repair, writing invoices for non-profit organizations, and information about how to apply for heating assistance this winter. Read more about their November events here. In October, they are offering:

“Microsoft Excel Basics” on October 27th 2:00 PM;

“Invoicing for Non-Profits” on October 29th 6:00 PM;

And a PNCIS Information Session on October 27th at 6:00 PM.

RSVP or find out more about the workshops by calling 412-456-0858, by writing BGC.ENEC@gmail.com, or visiting their website.