2015 Alleyway Project

Imagine your ideal alley  • Have conversations with your neighbors  • Find common ground  • Plan small steps to begin with  • Start with a cleanup effort  • Enhance your shared spaces  • Create something beautiful 

Goals:

  • Create new neighborhood traditions
  • Create a sense of place in neighborhoods
  • Engage and empower neighbors to do projects together
  • Draw attention to and enhance common space that neighbors share
  • Educate people with what they can do with their space

Timeline: Phase 1: April - June 2015. 

Activities In Progress - Get Involved!

  • Crowdsourced neighborhood asset map of cool spots in alleyways (ADUs, art, goats, etc) to visit on walks or bike rides (Contribute to the map!)
  • Online survey of individual interest, concerns, and ideas for alleyways, and preliminary site details, to start process for outreach to other neighbors on the block and more detailed site assessment (Take the survey!)
  • Recruitment for walk leaders through Friends of Trees walking program (see how to start a walk in 3 easy steps!)

Other Potential Activities:

  • Alleyway naming contest
  • Visioning workshop with neighbors that share an alley
  • Invasive plant removal/native plant planting work party
  • Artist panel painting convergence 
  • Wine tasting, BBQ or other strictly fun parties to celebrate completed beautification projects with linear games like horseshoes, ladderball, Kuub, tug of war, and slip n' slide
  • Pedalpalooza bike ride (June)

ALLEY ACTIVATING IDEAS

Accessible Clean & Safe • improve visibility along the alley by cutting back overgrown trees, bushes, and plants along your portion of the alley • mow the grass and weeds in your alley • fill in potholes • leave a light on • remove trash • install wayfinding signs • install alley lighting • establish a pedestrian network using alleys 

Environment & Nature • install a planter box or vertical plant wall • plant a tree • plant a rain garden • plant a naturescape using native plants • plant a community flower or food garden

Community • install benches or other seating • spend time in your backyard • build relationships with neighbors • plan neighborhood events in your alley • paint a mural on your alley garage or fence • install sculptures • create a community board • install a children’s play area

Prosperity • build an ADU (guest house/granny flat) • permanently improve your alley with surface brick, cobblestone, or other forms of permeable pavers • start or recruit a food cart or stand

Inspiration:

Below is a video created by artist Krista Connerly of Portland, who participated in the 2014 Resident Residency program, with a focus on her neighborhood alleyways. Her project culminated in an "Alleyway Nap Day" and a gallery exhibition of alleyway photographs and the video. Her focus is on alleyways as a meditative and psychologically fascinating space, with an appreciation for wildness in nature and its reflection in the human soul.

More Information:

Read about how this project is part of a larger neighborhood sustainability initiative with partnerships across the City!

Check out the Alley Allies Toolkit: www.AlleyAllies.com

Neighborhood Sustainability Project Coordinator: Katy Wolf, Boise Neighborhood Association (left) Read about Katy in this blog post! Meet her at monthly Boise neighborhood meetings and social events! Contact her at katyewolf@gmail.com.

PSU Institute of Sustainable Solutions Intern: Cheryl Leontina, Masters in Architecture student (right)

Read about Cheryl in this blog post! Meet her at the April 13 Boise neighborhood meeting and the April 27 Land Use & Transportation meeting! Contact her at leontina@pdx.edu.