March community meeting highlights
Two public art projects and updates from Glen Hazel community garden and Phipps Homegrown
By Juliet Martinez
More than 50 people gathered online and in person on the second floor of Community Kitchen for the March hybrid community meeting. It was snowing outside, but the updates on two public art projects, the Phipps Homegrown program and the Glen Hazel community gardens had everyone thinking of warmer days to come.
Second and Tecumseh Plaza public art
Edith Abeyta of Arts Excursions Unlimited spoke about the public art project planned for the plaza at Tecumseh and Second avenues next to Elevationz. Hazelwood Initiative owns the plaza and has commissioned the development of an art piece for that space with Arts Excursions Unlimited, Industrial Arts Workshop and Rena Halsel, owner of Elevationz.
The community input meetings for the project in February and March invited personal stories and asked participants to identify their color palette and style preferences. Through this process the theme of “crossroads” emerged.
The next step is for Industrial Arts Workshop's youth welding program to create design ideas to bring back to the community. They will create and fabricate the design in August. It should be finished by October. To learn more, contact Ms. Abeyta at email@example.com or Tim Kaulen, executive director of Industrial Arts Workshop, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Strategies for Migrating Species” bus shelters
Sallyann Kluz, executive director of the Office for Public Art, updated participants about a project funded by Almono Partners, owner of Hazelwood Green, and artists Alisha B. Wormsley and Carin Mincemoyer.
The project initially proposed four bus shelters on Hazelwood Green, but after community feedback, two more are planned for the Second Avenue business district.
The artists will return to talk to the community in May or June and finalize their designs for fabrication over the summer. The bus shelters should be installed by this time next year.
Glen Hazel Gardens
Carrie McGinnis of Glen Hazel updated participants on the Glen Hazel community garden and the Glen Hazel High Rise’s garden beds. She plans to plant shade-friendly fruits and vegetables in the community garden and strawberries and companion plantings in the high rise garden beds.
Ms. McGinnis wants to create beauty and abundance in Glen Hazel, and make the gardens safe, fun and accessible for Glen Hazel residents. She invites everyone to join in. She lives across the street from the Glen Hazel community garden and welcomes everyone to knock on her door to talk about the gardens.
Phipps Homegrown edible garden program
Jasmine Pope, community outreach coordinator for the Phipps Homegrown program, spoke about helping Hazelwood residents grow their own food.
Phipps staff deliver, build and install two raised beds (3ft x 5ft). They supply compost, seeds and seedlings free of charge, and Ms. Pope visits gardeners to work in the garden with them and answer questions. Residents can also get a gardening handbook and fencing to keep animals out.
The gardeners receive seeds and a top-off of compost every year. Residents without space for garden beds can receive containers for gardening. The program offers monthly gardening classes. For more information, contact Ms. Pope at Jpope@phipps.conservatory.org.
Affordable rentals and homeownership
Hazelwood Initiative has affordable rental units in the process of being rehabbed. They will be available soon to Section 8 voucher holders and low-income households wanting to rent in Hazelwood. The rent and utilities will be 30% or less of the tenant's income.
The organization also has a two-bedroom home for sale at 239 Mansion for a moderate- or low-income buyer, said Dave Brewton, senior director of real estate. He added that the group will be building three affordable, energy-efficient, three-bedroom, 1.5-bath homes on Flowers Avenue.
Interested parties should fill out the form at www.hazelwoodinitiative.org/ahop.
Former home of Jozsa’s Corner
The building that houses the former Jozsa's Corner is now free of asbestos. Architects will determine how much space is available, and then the community will weigh in on how the building should be used. After that, Hazelwood Initiative will raise the money and execute the final plan.
A meeting for prospective tenants of Gladstone Residences will be held on April 5 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Community Kitchen Pittsburgh, according to Sonya Tilghman, executive director of Hazelwood Initiative (see ad below).
Whole Homes Repair Act
The state is working on setting up the Whole Homes Repair Act. Action Housing was awarded the contract for Allegheny County and will now start hiring and making a website, according to Tiffany Taulton, director of outreach and sustainability for Hazelwood Initiative. Those who already applied for home repair aid through Action Housing but have not received assistance will be placed on the list. The allocation for this round is limited, so those with the most severe need will be served first. The goal is to prevent people from losing their homes or becoming homeless.
Duck Hollow connection
Email Ms. Taulton at email@example.com or call (412) 392-7427 to share your thoughts about connecting Second Avenue to Duck Hollow.
CMU development meeting
Carnegie Mellon University is launching a project on Hazelwood Green, so as the registered community organization, Hazelwood Initiative will host a development activities meeting on April 13.
Juliet Martinez is the managing editor of The Homepage.