Monday, August 19, 2019

Neighborhood Plan - Update

Five things to know about the planning process:

ONE: You can get involved! Tuesday evening at 6:30 the next steps in the Academy/Marvintown planning process will be discussed at a joint neighborhood meeting. It is taking place at St. John’s Church, 509 E. 26th Street. The more people who give their input, the more effective the planning process will be.

TWO: The City of Erie is making this happen led by Erie City Planner Kathy Wyrosdick. The Erie Refocused plan calls for each neighborhood to be researched and a plan for best practices in each neighborhood to be created. This might be happening whether or not the Academy Neighborhood organization existed - but the fact that this organization does exist has made it easier for the City Planning Department and “get the word out” to the residents of Academy Neighborhood.

THREE: The Academy-Marvintown area is big - it consists of two U.S. Census Bureau Tracts. The two tracts don’t exactly “jive” with our neighborhood map. Please see the attached pictures.

FOUR: Many people are working hard to make the plan a reality in the City Planning Department including Ms. Wyrosdic, Erin Carey, Paul Cancilla, and Krystal Otwerth. Mayor Schember has also gone door to door on a number of occasions to survey neighborhood residents and we have had a number of neighborhood volunteers who have completed property condition surveys.

FIVE: There are two ways information is being gathered about the neighborhood. 1. Property condition surveys 2. Personal and online surveys. That information will be used by the city to draw up a master plan based on the principles in Erie Refocused.

As the process continues it is going to be up to us, residents of Academy Neighborhood, to make sure that everyone’s voice is being heard and that decisions being made will benefit the most people. 

Moving forward, we may need to rethink and reinvent just what this neighborhood organization IS. Is the work we’re doing smart and focused on what needs to be done to help the most people? Where should we focus our limited resources? 

Friday, June 21, 2019

Neighborhood Plan

This is the beginning.

There has never been a plan for our neighborhood.

From the time modern homes started to be built on this hill over a century ago; through the booming industrial mid-century; continuing into the post-war era and the subsequent rust belt “we’re leaving for the suburbs” days, there has never been a plan to improve this part of Erie. Until now.

The City of Erie is working with us. City Planner Kathy Wyrosdick introduced the planning process for Academy-Marvintown on Tuesday. 

Here's what is going to happen next.

We are going to gather data on every piece of property in the neighborhood. This is where we need your help. There is a volunteer training session Monday, June 24th, at 6 pm, at the Academy Neighborhood Center, 3025 French Street. If you can attend, please click through and contact the Academy Neighborhood Association. Even if you read this after June 24th we can still train you quickly at any Academy Neighborhood Open Office Hours, Mondays 6-7:30 pm at 3025 French Street.

Volunteers and the folks from the planners office will use the app to record data from every property in the neighborhood.

If you want to be trained to gather data, you will need to download a smartphone app. Contact the Academy Neighborhood Association official Facebook page and I’ll send you the info.


In addition to the work that the City Planner's Office (along with neighborhood volunteers) will be doing, a planning room has been set up at the Academy Neighborhood Center. Everyone is welcome to stop by and take a closer look at the maps and plans as they develop. You'll also have a chance to comment on a number of questions:
1. What are our neighborhood's assets?
2. What are our neighborhood's biggest challenges?
3. What are some things that might surprise someone about our neighborhood?
The more people that comment the better.

Here is all of the information provided by Kathy Wyrosdick:

Please take a close look at this map. Note that the area where the plan is being developed is two census tracts - and is larger than what we normally consider our neighborhood.

This is a big opportunity for our neighborhood. Make sure your voice is heard.