The Q at Parkside

(for those for whom the Parkside Q is their hometrain)

News and Nonsense from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Lefferts and environs, or more specifically a neighborhood once known as Melrose Park. Sometimes called Lefferts Gardens. Or Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Or PLG. Or North Flatbush. Or Caledonia (west of Ocean). Or West Pigtown. Across From Park Slope. Under Crown Heights. Near Drummer's Grove. The Side of the Park With the McDonalds. Jackie Robinson Town. Home of Lefferts Manor. West Wingate. Near Kings County Hospital. Or if you're coming from the airport in taxi, maybe just Flatbush is best.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Cleanup, Cleanup, Everybody Cleanup

In my catbird seat over at the ol' Community Board, the Q has noted a marked uptick in the number of people actively doing something to combat messy trashy messiness in our neck of the borough. From the Mad Mommas of PLG Civic's Cleanup Days to NAMA's efforts to make Nostrand more appealing to shoppers, now FEPMA's joined the ranks and is organizing a weekend of beautification along Flatbush, from Empire to Parkside. (And the Q hopes that the many businesses just off Flatbush and along Parkside will join in as well!) For its part, the Lefferts Manor Association will be cleaning the side streets and painting flower barrels.

The full letter from FEPMA's  leaders is below. Feel free to shoot an email to executive director Delroy Wright if you'd like to know more or sign up to get some free paint for your gates or storefronts. Or just show up on the morning of April 28th or 29th from 8am at 653 Flatbush.

If you're part of a neighborhood or block association and would like to join the effort, you will be welcomed with open arms. Should be a great day to show some pride for the neighborhood and get to know your local merchants.
April 9th 2012                                                                               

Dear FEPMA Merchants:

On April 28th & 29th 2012, a neighborhood clean-up and graffiti removal will take place. The effort is spear headed by FEPMA and NAMA (Nostrand Avenue Merchant’s Association).  Two other Merchants Associations (Kingston Avenue and Utica Avenue) and the Lefferts Manor Association will also take part in this effort.  Your participation will not be a lost cause on the neighborhood.

What are we asking you to do?
  • To sign up to participate. Consent form is attached.
  • To clean and prepare your shutters for the repainting and graffiti removal.
  •  To sweep, collect trash and wash down your store fronts
  •  To remove clutter and old posters from your windows.
What will we provide you with?
  •  We will provide you with paint and painting supplies such as: Paint Brushes, Rollers, Drop Cloths, Roller Frames and Paint TraysBrooms, Shovels, Rakes  and, Garbage Bags
What will we require of you?
  • To prepare shutters, by cleaning over night for the next morning’s graffiti removal.
  • To  provide at least one person to assist in the morning effort.
  • In addition, FEPMA organizers will provide some neighborhood volunteers to assist in the effort. However, we do expect merchants’ labor in cleaning and removing the graffiti from their locations. We also request that you provide some light refreshments and snacks for the volunteers.
What is the time frame of the main effort?
  • The time frame of the main effort is 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Saturday April 28th  and 9:00 a.m to 11:00 a.m. on Sunday April 29th 2012.


Anonymous said...

I was walking on Flatbush south of plg the other week, somewhere around Linden, and saw a guy in coveralls and one of those wheeled trash cans working his way down the sidewalk picking up trash. I assume he was hired by some sort of BID, and that his range ended at Clarkson, because everything north of there was a total mess of litter. What are the economics of hiring a guy like that for flatbush from clarkson to empire? Can it seriously be that much of a hurdle? Some back of the envelope math: one guy at $15/hr x 40 hrs/wk=$600x52 wks=$31,200. With supplies, insurance, whatever, round that up to $50K per year. Say there are 100 businesses on that stretch of flatbush. That would be $10 per week per business. It could even be prorated for street frontage. How goddamn hard would it be to get somebody to do that? I'd put in $10 a month HAPPILY for there not to be so much garbage in our neighborhood. I've given up on the idea of changing the mentality of litterers on flatbush (after nearly getting in a fight with a guy who dropped a cigarette pack out of his window) but how hard could it be to collectively hire someone at a fair wage to clean up?

babs said...

Flatbush south of here DOES have a BID, so there's the difference.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Anon 11:37: Your eyes do not deceive you. What you witnessed is the power of a BID in action...The Flatbush BID has been around for decades, and BID's assess property owners a certain % of tax to run the BID. When a merchants group is ready, it can bring stakeholders together and vote to become a BID. On Flatbush north of Parkside, though, don't hold your breath. At most FEPMA meetings you're lucky if half a dozen businesses show up. There simply isn't the will or mechanism yet to make it happen. Flatbush is still pretty much the wild, wild west - no cohesion, strategy or political will - oh, and a few stray six-shooters to boot.

Litterers will litter, but it's been shown that they prefer to litter on already dirty sidewalks. That's why I'm leading the effort to demand accountability from shopkeeps for the areas in front of their businesses. It's the law, but some may need a refresher course. I've posted on this all before, but I've grown weary of the slow pace of action around here, so I'm picking up 300 letters and Sanitation flyers from CB9, over my and the chair of CB9's signatures, on Friday to hand out to businesses. At the very least, we could try to step up enforcement.

So to answer your question "how goddam hard would it be to get somebody to do that?" -- apparently really effing hard or it would have been done a long, long time ago....

ElizabethC said...

I think this is great. I wish we could get people to stop dumping in Umma Park. Beautiful flowers blooming right now...admidst the soda bottles and wrappers :(