Archive for the ‘Image & Identity’ Category

Eco Friendly Lux Salon Supports NbNW

Friday, April 30th, 2010

I’d like to thank Lux, the Eco Friendly Salon for their generous support from their Earth Week promotion. Ten percent of sales for the week went to NbNW to support our tree planting efforts in the neighborhood! It’s great to work with small business people in the neighborhood to make the neighborhood better for all the residents and businesses. We wish Lux all the best for the coming summer. Get in there today and get ready for summer. With weather like this, you should look your best for being out and about in the neighborhood!

We have decided to use the funds to purchase tree gators. Tree Gators are slow release watering bags for newly planted trees. The City Forester Cindy Smith will use the bags the next time we plant trees in the NbNW project area to help get them off to a great start!

Census – get those forms in!

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

The City’s overall average response rate to the Census is 69% (range of 85% to 59%). To look at the different Census Tracts in Bethlehem, you can go to: , select Participation Rates, and type in Bethlehem, PA. Click on “Local View”.

As you know, grant money and federal aid is provided to Cities based on their population, so we need to have everyone send in their Census forms. It only costs the government 42 cents for MAILED IN CENSUS FORMS, but $60 if a census worker has to come knocking on your door.

Only Three Days Left To Mail Back Your 2010 Census Form There’s still time to fill out and mail back your 2010 Census form and help our community get the funding it needs. Please fill out and mail back your census form TODAY! If you mail back your form by April 21, you can avoid a visit from a census worker. For each one percent increase in the mail back response rate, we help save $85 million in taxpayer funds for the expensive follow up work load. So not only is it safe, easy, and important, but mailing back the census form can help all of us in the tough fiscal times.

Information provided on Census forms is completely confidential, and it takes between 4 and 7 minutes to complete the 10 questions. The Spanish Council at 520 E. 4th Street is a Census Assistance Center, and anyone can go there to get help filling out the form. A staff from the Census Bureau will be there Mondays and Wednesdays from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm. The Census staff is bilingual! Let’s make sure everyone is counted.

Thanks to all for your help!

Christine Bartleson, AICP

Community Planner

City of Bethlehem

(w) 610-997-7640

Spring Cleaning set for Saturday

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Saturday is the day to cleanup at Fairview, Friendship, Route 378 at 3rd Avenue, Route 378 at Union Blvd, Monocacy Street from Moravian to Union Blvd and in partnership with the DBA, Main Street. Download the flyer and if you are on Facebook, please indicate your coming on the North by Northwest Neighborhood Initiative Group Page event for the cleanups so we have enough gloves and bags etc.

Great NbNW Cleanup 2010

Start TimePlace Site Captain Phone
8:00am Downtown Bethlehem Samantha Schwartz 610-841-5831
9:00am Route 378/3rd Avenue Megan Donovan 914-874-6570
10:00am Friendship Park Anne Connors 610-867-3592
11:00am Fairview Park Kinsey Gensel 484-223-8816
12:00pm Moravian (meet at HUB) Leni Johnson 610-861-1602
2:00pm Higbee Park Hillary Kwiatek 610-984-7748

NbNW Newsletter Streets soon get pdf today

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

Get your NbNW News here. Hurry Hurry, read all about it. Spring projects coming soon. Get your paper here!

Dowload PDF here – Spring 2010

Graffiti and Neighborhood Health

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

I stopped over at Friendship Park this morning to check out the condition of the play equipment and it’s pretty much covered with graffiti. Fairview Park only has 1 small thing to cleanup. I saw a few stop signs that need some cleaning as well.

If you see graffiti happening, get the camera, get the videocamera and call the police. These people are taking significant money out of your pocket in the form of the value of your house. According to the National Association of Realtors, property located within a community where there is graffiti will lose 15 percent of its value. Say your house is worth $180,000. That’s like somebody breaking down your door and taking $27,000.00 from you. If the graffiti is profane or hateful, the property owner can expect to lose up to 25 percent of the home’s value. That’s a $45,000 robbery.

This is not a victimless crime. Homeowners are the victims here. It’s spring, it’s the time when for sale signs go up and potential new neighbors are cruising the neighborhood. Are they going to pass when they see graffiti on stop signs? Are they going to look elsewhere when they stop to check out the neighborhood playground and see that filth? Probably.

So what’s going to happen to that house for sale? It’s going to sell for less. What happens when you need to move to take that new job or you are expecting another baby and need more space and that house becomes the comp on which the value of your house is determined? It’s going to come out of your pocket.

Be on the lookout for graffiti. Ideally they get caught and prosecuted. At least we can clean it up quickly because graffiti spreads like a rash. Trash, broken windows and abandoned cars are next. Stop graffiti in it’s tracks before it’s too late for your property value.

Right time, right place

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

Many prospective home buyers with stable jobs are able to justify making a purchase now as appreciation is probably back on track over the next couple years. Add to that lots of inventory of available homes give you some choices.

Consider buying in an up and coming neighborhood. The North by Northwest Neighborhood is getting special attention. Our very existance proves that. Adding trees to streets, fixing up parks, holding neighborhood events….these are neighborhoods on the rise.

Search for a walkable place with access to mass transit. Property values in urban centers are expected to rise more than those in suburban communities according to Christopher Leinberger, author of The Option of Urbanism.

We have lots of great houses at great prices. Consider North by Northwest when looking for a house this year.

CAT Keeps Bus Terminal Tidy

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

CAT will be cleaning the bus terminal at Broad & Guetter Streets where 3,500 people a day catch the bus or transfer from one bus to another again on April 24th. They do this every single Saturday providing a valuable cleanup service for the downtown, for the neighborhood and for the 3500 people that use the terminal. Their base of operations is the Bethlehem Bicycle Cooperative at 14 West Raspberry Street.

Please contact Steve if you are interested in learning more about CAT, pitching in on the cleanup and to get the latest skinny on biking in and around Bethlehem.

Steve Schmitt
Car Free CAT Director
Coalition for Appropriate Transportation
14 West Raspberry Street
Bethlehem, PA 18018
Office phone: 610 954 5744

Skateplaza – Pepsi Refresh Project – Vote!

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

We finished in the top 100 for the Pepsi Refresh Project in March, which means our application for the $250,000 grant for the Bethlehem Skateplaza with the Pepsi Refresh Project IS STILL ACTIVE!!!! Votes do not carry over and whoever receives the most votes this month is awarded the money for April.

Starting April 1, the public can cast their vote for this project once a day, every day, through the month of April. It is important that we receive as many votes as possible to ensure that we are awarded the grant! If you have not yet registered, the instructions are below.

It is Easy to vote.

1. Go to:

2. Click “Sign In” along the bottom of the page by using your Facebook Account or by creating a Pepsi user name. To create a new account, enter your email address, and click no, “I’m new here”, and follow the instructions to register your email. You can vote once per email registered per day.

3. Once signed in, click “Vote for this Idea” on the right hand side of the webpage.

4. Spread the word to all your friends, coworkers, family via Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, email, etc. to vote for the project


Citizen Connect & City Sourced – how it should work

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Citizen Connect

Graffiti is bad. If there is graffiti present in your neighborhood it has a DIRECT impact on what your home is worth and what the house that’s for sale down the street will fetch. Removing graffiti quickly is VERY IMPORTANT. So, how SHOULD that work?

Citizen Connect is how it should work.

Have a smartphone? ALOT of people do and more and more each day. Imagine having an iphone app that would connect you directly with the person who will take action on what you are reporting! Bethlehem is putting a graffiti buster full-time person in place very shortly. IMAGINE if you are out and about in Bethlehem and come across some graffiti. You whip out your iphone and snap a picture. The picture has gps coordinates and you enter some info about the graffiti and press send. IMAGINE if that went directly to the guy who did the graffiti removal. Would that improve the process? Would that get graffiti off the street faster?

Now imagine if that worked for potholes and other problems as well. That would be cool!

Wish we had Citizen Connect here in Bethlehem!! Would be a great blow to graffiti everywhere if Boston would make the code public domain or license it at $500 a city and let all the cities tweak it and install it! They paid about $25,000 to write it, I think there are 50 cities that would jump right on that, thereby making it free to Boston!

Thank You goes out to Robin Spilner for this info.

Update, we found another “app” called City Sourced being used out west. Check out some shots.

Com. Banking Week – Graffiti Cleanup w First Star Bank

Monday, March 29th, 2010

A big thank you goes out to the gang from First Star Bank. Last year, they sponsored our graffiti removal supplies to help remove graffiti at our parks and around the neighborhood. We periodically went after it at the playground equipement at Fairview and Friendship Parks and I kept the wipes in my car occassionally stopping at various spots around the neighborhoods removing what I could and documenting what I couldn’t and passing along to the police.

First Star even got a couple of their branch managers together last spring to go with me to Fairview, Friendship, West Side and the Rose Garden to remove graffiti themselves and see how the removal products worked out.

So, now it’s spring and the staff of the West Broad Street First Star Bank branch will be headed out with me to remove the latest graffiti as it warms up and more people come out to use the parks.

First Star has always been there for us with support for our Movie System, support for movie events – including the upcoming film Igor at the Rose Garden on May 22 and with the graffiti project. Businesses and the community working together making the neighborhood better.