Neighborhoods Now: Bed-Stuy Gateway BID
About Neighborhoods Now
In collaboration with the Urban Design Forum, Neighborhoods Now connects neighborhoods hard-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic with leading design firms. In Bed-Stuy, Jackson Heights, Kingsbridge, and Washington Heights, these working groups are collaborating to develop safe and effective reopening strategies.
The outcomes are a set of design recommendations, prototypes, and installations empowering communities to respond to their immediate needs, while contributing to the city-wide strategy on pandemic response. In some neighborhoods, prototypes have already been implemented, and Van Alen and Urban Design Forum are actively fundraising to support additional implementation.
Learn more about Neighborhoods Now.
Working Groups ↓
Community Partner: Bed-Stuy Gateway BID
Coordinating Firm: Moody Nolan
The Bed-Stuy Gateway BID identified the following priorities:
- COVID-19 education and awareness
- Reopening strategies for local businesses
- Amplification of meaningful artistic voices within the community
- Play areas for children’s activities
- Comfortable, shaded, and safe places for outdoor respite
Focusing on Bed-Stuy’s Marcy Plaza, the working group envisions an actively inclusive plaza which provides a sense of attachment, belonging, and emotional investment for residents. In their proposal, Marcy Plaza would become a hub for socially distanced activities including an outdoor art gallery amplifying local artists, podium-style seating for outdoor events, and a pop-up playground with swings and a library. Signage and environmental graphics also celebrate individual businesses while encouraging safety for business owners and customers, while planters and graphics also encourage healthy social distancing measures.
In the short-term, the Gateway BID working group is now implementing hand sanitizer stations in public spaces and at entrances to businesses. In collaboration with Alloy and law firm Fried Frank, the working group also organized a mediation between landlords and small businesses owners to aid with lease negotiations.