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North Conway, NH

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2023

Project Category: Lifelong housing and accessibility

Description: This grant will support the Safe and Smart Home Expo, which will include a Smart Home on Wheels that will demonstrate technology that can enable older people to age in place safely and in comfort.

Greeley, IA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2022

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: This project supported the City of Greeley's efforts to create a downtown corridor. The placemaking effort involved adding decorative light poles along State Highway 38.

Old Orchard Beach, ME

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: Old Orchard Beach Community Friendly Connection reenergized a neighborhood block, organizing residents to clean up, restore and refresh the Washington Avenue District and Atlantic Courts Park. A sidewalk and crosswalk painting project brightened the area and encouraged locals to walk. To improve public safety, the town also worked with the local cable and electric companies to mount a security camera near the park's basketball court and convert the court's lighting to LED. After the project was complete, about 250 people attended a block party to celebrate, with residents voting to rename the area Washington Square. Nearby businesses and community groups have ridden the momentum and made improvements to their properties as well. Those living in the neighborhood report they walk through the area more often since the transformation.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

Ellsworth, WI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: Ellsworth's once-bustling East End corridor had declined over several decades, with a 60 percent vacancy rate along Broadway Street. The Local Chamber of Commerce hoped to see the neighborhood rise again as a pedestrian-friendly, mixed-use area. To promote its vision, the Chamber commissioned six murals celebrating local agricultural history. They also put up light pole banners and window clings with branding for the neighborhood and added benches, bistro tables and hanging planter baskets along Broadway Street. The Chamber then staged a historical walking tour, which garnered local news coverage and spurred the County historical association to consider designating the East End as an official historic district. In conjunction with these placemaking efforts, the Chamber launched a pop-up program for small businesses opening in the East End. Following that initiative, two of the participating decided to operate permanently in the neighborhood.

Rochester, MN

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2023

Project Category: Walkability

Description: The project will conduct 12 walk audits in a neighborhood sidewalk improvement district in support of the city's Community Development Department Active Transportation Plan.

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