Monday, November 10, 2008

New neighborhood group to launch in spring

A steering committee has been formed to draft bylaws for a new neighborhood organization to be called "Knox Hill Neighborhood Association".
Local residents have been holding informal meetings to get the group going. The neighborhood which is in the Fairmount area is forming the group to 're brand and re market' the area and get away from some of the preconceived,negative notions about the area. The neighborhood will include the 1800-1900 block of Knox and the cross streets of McBrayer, Thompson and Scully Streets.

The area is a great pocket of mostly owner occupied homes in an otherwise mostly rental neighborhood. The homes architecturally are Italianate, Queen Anne and Second Empire and include everything from small cottages to large elegant homes. There are many long term residents but also many new people moving into the area who are engaged in historic restoration.
Short term goals of the organization include a Community Crime Watch, better lighting, and neighborhood clean up. Long term goals include thumbnail parks, landscaping of the sidewalk green spaces along Knox, encourage new "market rate' infill construction on vacant lots and the historic registry nomination of key properties in the neighborhood. With several new home owners in the area, who bought just over the last summer, there is almost 1.2 million dollars in new restorations/investment planned over the next 3 years.

"Re branding" efforts will include a neighborhood website, a long range community development plan, a historic walking tour brochure, and an education program for local Realtors to encourage reinvestment in the area. The goal is to take the neighborhood to a higher owner occupancy rate as well as aggressively pursue substandard rental property owners in the area. The website is under construction and an announcement will follow when it is up and running.

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