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Deerfield Beach, FL

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Roadway/sidewalks/crosswalk improvement

Description: Northeast Third Avenue in Deerfield Beach is a busy corridor that connects residents to many schools, businesses and medical offices, but lacks pedestrian and bike infrastructure. The City of Deerfield Beach, in partnership with the Broward Metropolitan Planning Organization, created an art-filled pop-up safety demonstration at several key intersections along the roadway. To make crossing the street easier, the project temporarily added curb extensions and pedestrian refuges. Artwork painted on a pavement made crosswalks more visible. Additionally, organizers created brightly painted, protected bike lanes and added signs encouraging cars to slow down.

St. Louis, MO

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2022

Project Category: Roadway/sidewalks/crosswalk improvement

Description: To improve pedestrian safety, this project helped build and creatively paint two crosswalks on a prominent boulevard where there are long stretches without designated crossings.

Newburgh, NY

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2017

Project Category: Roadway/sidewalks/crosswalk improvement

Description: As part of Orange County's Complete Streets program, the City of Newburgh staged a pop-up demonstration showcasing street safety improvements on Lake Street. To narrow the distance needed to cross the street and make pedestrians more visible to drivers, project organizers painted bump-outs at intersections. They added temporary barriers around the bump-outs to separate them from street traffic. Decorative planters further protected and beatified the space. Additionally, the City used stencils to paint brightly colored polka dots on the sidewalk surface, creating a sense of fun around the intersection.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

Chicago, IL

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2018

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: To promote walkability, economic development and better quality of life for residents, the Chicago Department of Transportation created a replicable prototype for a People Spot. Consisting of a wooden platform, the People Spots transform on-street parking spaces into outdoor patios. To help neighborhood groups set up their own People Spots, the City published construction plans and an assembly manual for the parklets online. Part of the City's Livable Streets Program, organizers say the temporary infrastructure helps neighborhoods overcome economic hardship by encouraging residents to walk and frequent local businesses. The City installed its first People Spot in the South Side Chatham neighborhood in 2018. That iteration measured about six feet wide by 20 feet long, but the platforms can be as long as 80 feet.

Chicago, IL

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2020

Project Category: Community Gardens

Description: The El Paseo Community Garden in Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood added a new gathering space, dubbed El Convivio or The Gathering. The goal of the project was to make the garden more accessible to Latino older adults living in nearby apartment buildings. Improvements to the space include an outdoor kitchen and patio with a fire pit, ADA-compliant seating, walking paths and an accessible planting station. Planters at the site were specifically designed to grow culturally relevant produce, including tomatoes, peppers, garlic and onions. The picnic area's stucco and ceramic tiles mimic designs seen in Mexican haciendas. Garden leaders partnered with nonprofit architectural firm Human Scale to involve garden members in the space's design and volunteers from the neighborhood installed the new amenities. As El Paseo's leadership finalized El Convivio, they also worked with the City of Chicago to secured additional land to expand the garden.

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