Tree Streets Neighborhood Project

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YOUR VOICE, YOUR CHOICE!
Thank you for helping decide how $25,000 should be spent in the
Tree Streets - Calles de árboles

We asked those who live, work, attend school, own property or a business, or practice their faith in the Tree Streets Neighborhood to help decide how $25,000 should be invested in their neighborhood.

Over the last few months, the City collected over 200 project ideas.
The most recommended eligible ideas were turned into proposals that were voted on.
Over 300 votes were cast and the winning project was....

Futsal Court

Here are the complete voting results: 

Proposed ProjectProject Cost# Online Votes# Paper Votes# Total VotesRank
Futsal Court$20,00069991681
Community Gardens*$15,00081301112
Los Amigos Park Improvements$25,0005039893
Heritage Rail Trail Improvements$25,0005818764
Trash Receptacles & Dog Waste Stations$10,0004913625
Portable Gaga Pit$2,5001925446
Transit Shelter by Palm Square$22,0003210427
Street Art$10,0002710378
Portable Speed Feedback Signs$12,000148229

*Community Gardens, which had the second-highest number of votes, will receive the remaining $5,000 to expand their gardens in the Tree Streets Neighborhood.

A BIG THANK YOU to everyone who suggested and voted for projects to improve the Tree Streets Neighborhood!

The Futsal Court is Open!!

Futsal ribbon cutting flyer final

About the Projects

Nine project ideas were developed into project proposals. Check out the Voter Guide (pdf) / Guía del votante (pdf) to learn more about each project that was on the "Your Voice, Your Choice!" ballot.

There were a lot of GREAT ideas gathered through this effort, but we just couldn't implement them all. Some project ideas exceeded the $25,000 budget, some weren't eligible (please see criteria below), and some we will try to do through other programs. Here is a summary of the ideas (pdf)/ resumen de ideas (pdf) we received.

Project Background:

Mayor Jim Donchess has initiated a project to engage the residents of the Tree Streets in directing an investment of $25,000 to improve the neighborhood. This effort will be based on a concept known as Participatory Budgeting in which community members directly influence how to spend part of a public budget. It empowers residents by giving them real power to make real decisions over real money in order to make their neighborhood a better place to live.

Watch this short video to learn more about Participatory Budgeting:

"Your Voice, Your Choice!" Goals and Principles: 

  • Empower residents of the Tree Streets to make decisions on where/how to invest in their neighborhood
  • Foster a sense of unity in the Tree Streets; inspire residents to engage in their community and build new relationships and networks that will help improve the quality of life in the neighborhood
  • Develop civic leaders by building skills and knowledge through involvement in this process
  • Promote the sharing of perspectives and knowledge to connect neighborhood needs and challenges with neighborhood assets and aspirations
  • Include people of all races, ethnicities, abilities, incomes, backgrounds, ages, and genders
  • Encourage engagement by people who are often excluded or are disillusioned with politics
  • Ensure transparency by sharing information and making decisions as openly as possible

How the Process Works:

A 5-step process that will take approximately 4 months to complete has been outlined for this project:

Planning & Design
Planning and Design: Neighborhood advocates are identified for participation on the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee develops guidelines to ensure the process is inclusive and meets neighborhood needs. How and where to collect input from residents is determined, and informational materials are developed and distributed within the neighborhood.
Gather Ideas
Idea Collection: Ideas for improvements are gathered in person at public idea gathering events and also through paper/electronic platforms. The Steering Committee categorizes eligible and feasible ideas by topic area and advances them for further development.
Proposal Development
Proposal Development: Project champions are identified and they vet ideas with City staff who would be responsible for implementing the projects. With the assistance of City staff, viable ideas get developed into project proposals with cost estimates.
Vote
Voting: Project champions develop and present information to promote their project at a science fair type expo. People will have the opportunity to review each project and then vote on which project(s) they would like to see funded with the $25,000.
Fund Projects
Funding and Implementation: The winning project(s) then get implemented by the City within one year.


The Timeline:

Planning & Design: November 2018
Idea Collection: November 2018 – January 2019
Proposal Development: January 2019
Expo & Voting: February 2019
Funding & Implementation: March 2019 – February 2020

Project Ideas:

Project ideas are eligible for funding if:

  • They are capital infrastructure projects.
  • They are within the boundaries of the Tree Streets Neighborhood, as shown below.
  • They serve the general public and meet the needs of the neighborhood.
  • They are implemented by the City of Nashua or by a non-profit Nashua organization. 
  • They cost between $1,000 and $25,000 per project.
  • They are a one-time expense for the City.
  • They must respect the City's laws, regulations, policies and action plans.

YCYV Tree Streets Boundary

Example Project Ideas and Estimated Costs:

  • Park benches ($2,500 each)
  • Trash/recycling receptacles ($1,000 each)
  • Playground equipment ($1,000 - $25,000, depending on size, materials & components)
  • Community gardens ($15,000 - $20,000 to support 25 families)
  • Sidewalk flower beds/gardens ($2,500 - $5,000, depending on size)
  • Pedestrian-scale lighting (varies, depending on wired vs solar)
  • Pedestrian crossing signals ($25,000 per location)
  • Stamped "brick" high-visibility crosswalks ($5,000 per location)
  • Speed feedback signs ($15,000 each)
  • Upgraded street signs and poles ($175 each)
  • Bike racks ($500 - $1,000 each)
  • Bike lanes ($9,000 per ¼ mile per side of the road)
  • Bus Shelter ($18,000 - $20,000 each)
  • Fencing (varies based on length, height & material)
  • Emergency "blue light" call boxes ($2,500 - $5,000 each)
  • Solar charging stations ($5,000 - $10,000 each)
  • Community kiosk/bulletin board ($5,000 - $10,000)
  • Public art installation (varies based on size & materials)
  • Community tool library ($15,000 - $20,000)

Voting:

  • Anyone who lives, works, attends school, owns property/business, and/or practices their faith in the Tree Streets Neighborhood who is 10 years of age or older may vote.
  • Each voter may cast up to 3 votes, but only one vote per project.
  • Projects will be ranked by order of highest number of votes to lowest. The $25,000 will be distributed across the top ranking projects until it runs out. If there is a tie, then the Steering Committee will decide the winning project with input from the implementing agency (e.g., Public Works, Parks & Recreation, etc.) 
  • To facilitate broad participation, voting will take place over multiple days at multiple locations. Absentee ballots will be offered to handicapped, out of town or limited mobility voters. Ballots can be mailed to voters who request an absentee ballot. These ballots will be numbered and tracked to avoid duplicate voting. Ballots can be returned in person to City Hall or at a location in the neighborhood (to be determined) or by mail, and must be received 5 pm on March 1st.

The Steering Committee:

Roles and Responsibilities of the Steering Committee are as follows:

  • Play a key role in designing and guiding the process.
  • Help ensure the process is inclusive and consistent with the goals and principles of the Tree Streets Neighborhood project.
  • Attend events and meetings during each stage of the process and provide assistance at public meetings
  • Identify and recruit individuals and groups to support the Tree Streets Neighborhood project.
  • Provide specialized support as needed, e.g., research, organizing, media, online engagement, social media, policy development, budgeting, and/or design.
  • Promote the process through the press, social media, and other networks, using protocol agreed upon by the Steering Committee.
  • Assist in mobilizing broad, inclusive and proportional community participation that reflects the diversity of the Neighborhood.
  • Help create and distribute educational and promotional materials.

Steering Committee members are:

  • Tom Lopez, Ward 4 Alderman
  • Kim Adie, YMCA
  • Erica Brooks, NeighborWorks
  • Jennifer Vadney, NeighborWorks
  • Shaun Nelson, Police Athletic League
  • Jennifer McInerney, St. Aloysius of Gonzaga Parish
  • Pastor Dave Smith, Crossway Christian Church
  • Sarah Marchant, City of Nashua
  • Julie Chizmas, City of Nashua
  • Andy Patrician, City of Nashua