The Highland Placemaking Team was created in 2015 as a combination of the former HPNA Arts & Cultural and Traffic Calming Teams. We are all volunteers. If you are in the neighborhood area and wish to join us see the form below.
As a result of the September 2009 General Meeting on Safety and Security, a group of neighbors came together to form a Traffic Calming Team. The original areas of focus were: Linden and Meigs Streets around Ellwanger and Barry Park and also Goodman Street at Linden. This playground is so popular with young families that it can be viewed as “The Heart of the Neighborhood”. So when the team created its first list of priorities, ensuring the safety of children going to and from this park received top rank. Right behind on the list is the task of researching and working with the City on ways to create safer crossings on Goodman Street. But while discussing these hot-spots, we realized that our initiative needed an even broader focus towards building a modern culture of respect for pedestrian and non-vehicular transportation within our neighborhood, the surrounding area and the city at large. That is how we came to embrace the term “Placemaking” as a core definition of our goals. In fact, Placemaking is much more that just Traffic Calming, it embraces all the activities, events and creative projects that our group has developed with an Arts & Cultural focus. Everything we do as do as team connects to our belief that we, as residents, should work together to improve the quality of the life in our public spaces – a life that our neighborhood then shares together.
As stated in the teams, goals statement, we desire that our neighborhood should eventually rival the best among “walking-friendly” communities across the United States. With weeks of research in hand**, on November 12th 2009, members of the Traffic Team met with the South East Quadrant Team, and other City officials to begin a new process and a new dialogue on traffic calming. We presented our goals, concerns, preliminary research, and possible engineering solutions. The city officials were very attentive to our concerns and are more than willing to work with us. The original presentation that we shared with city officials is filed here on this site so that anyone interested in this topic can examine it. As we continue to articulate our concerns, plans and solutions, we will always share such important documents on this website. While it will take time, the process has started for developing solutions:
- The BoulevART 2012 Project (refreshed in 2014) was a result of the original action plan of this team
- The Closure of the southern entrance to Linden from Goodman and the installation of a new Crosswalk is another result
- City transportation sent us a detailed response regarding all of our original requested engineering changes. Our plans have evolved with this dialogue in mind
- In 2014, we worked to broaden our Traffic Calming effect while partnering on the Voice of the Citizen Project: One result is the Neighborhood Pace initiative.
Our team is compiling a list of desired educational materials to start a resource library as well as a set of web links. We have found that some of our suggestions for possible solutions are currently out of the control of the City. For example, in order to lower speed limits around the playground to match that of schools we will need a change in state law. Look for details soon on how you can join our efforts to make that change happen.
For all Team Placemaking initiatives to be successful, we’ll need the input, advice and support of Neighborhood residents. Send us your projects ideas and traffic calming concerns in as much detail as possible. And look to attend team meeting as these are scheduled on our calendar. The Highland Placemaking Team can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 473-0026 for Marcia Zach & Michael Tomb, Highland Placemaking Team Co-Chairs