By Darren Cotton:
While helping the residents of Minnesota Avenue prepare to unveil their newly landscaped median for the Capen Garden Walk yesterday morning I couldn’t help but think of what a great story the transformation would make. The effort was spearheaded by Yvonne Brown, who along with her husband, lead the recently reactivated Minnesota Block Club.
Unlike most of the block clubs that are members of the University Heights Collaborative, the Minnesota Block Club faces first hand the more serious repercussions of urban blight and abandonment through gang related violence and heavy drug trafficking. However, a group of dedicated residents is turning this once forgotten street into a safer and much more attractive place to live. I’ve attached a before and after snapshot of the median project (the ‘after’ was taken this morning and the ‘before’ was taken from Google maps). The block club was able to tap into the City’s Livable Communities Initiative fund to pay for the flowers and supplies.