The Parkside Plaza is located outside the Parkside Avenue train station in Brooklyn, New York City. It is just across the street from the beautiful Prospect Park and is trafficked on foot by thousands of commuters everyday. The Parkside Plaza was originally just a wide concrete patch. The plaza had been undeveloped and desolate for almost 50 years. Commuters just passed through this unexploited space unaffected. As a result of the potential there was deemed there, The Neighborhood Plaza Partnership, which was created by the New York City Department of Transportation in 2013, led the changes in the desolated space by collaborating with local residents and businesses, as well as the NYC Department. The Community envisioned to bring the park experience into the pedestrian walking by. The Parkside Plaza made a successful official opening on May 2, 2015 following years of work by locals. Although the NYC department generously donated the street furniture (tables, seatings, planters), this plaza was financially enabled through fundraising using the crowd-resourcing platform- IOBY. IOBY aims to help neighborhoodsto turn potential dreams for their community into a reality. IOBY co-founder Barnes once stated that residents are the important bundle of information about their own neighborhoods. They know the social fabrics and they make better decisions about how to use public spaces than anyone else.
In order to operate the public space, the maintenance of the plaza is to rely on volunteers and annual local fundraising efforts from IOBY. The annual local funding target is set at 15,000 USD for the activities held in the plaza and additional maintenance work. Frequent programs such as cultural activities (a portable library and a reading room and a Green market) and workshops are being held in the plaza. The Parkside plaza is now a vibrant, clean and safe public place. It is a great place for members of the community to sit and relax.
Image: Neighborhood Plaza Partnership © 2015