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The original item was published from 9/21/2023 1:24:34 PM to 11/1/2023 12:00:01 AM.

News Flash

City of Durham News

Posted on: September 21, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Voting Now Open for $2.4 Million in Funding for New Participatory Budgeting Projects

Participatory Budgeting voting is open September 21, 2023, - October 31, 2023.

City of Durham Residents Ages 13+ Asked to Rank Their Favorite Projects from September 21 to October 31

Which community projects should receive millions in funding to become a reality?

Durham residents now have the chance to rank their top choices among 10 project proposals to receive the latest round of $2.4 million in participatory budgeting (PB Durham) grant funding.

What You Need to Know

  • PB Durham is a democratic process in which community members directly decide how to spend $2.4 million.
  • 10 project proposals are now available for residents to select and rank top choices, and the proposals with the most votes win.
  • Online voting is now open from September 21 to October 31.

PB Durham voting begins on Thursday, September 21 and will end on Tuesday, October 31. All city residents, including students 13 years or older, are encouraged to vote on how $2.4 million will be spent in Cycle III. Of the 10 projects included in Cycle III, the goal of this year’s funding is to focus on projects that invest public money where it’s needed the most.

“This year’s proposals were evaluated for equity based on project location, the demographics of impacted residents, and access to resources,” said Assistant Director Andrew Holland with the City’s Budget and Management Services Department. “Having residents vote for what they believe the City should fund in their communities gives them a real voice in their local government decision-making process on how their tax dollars are put back into their communities.”

The 10 project proposals included in this voting cycle are as follows:

  1. Pedestrian Safety on East Trinity Avenue - $990,000: Install pedestrian safety and traffic calming measures such as sidewalks, crosswalks, and signage on East Trinity Avenue from North Roxboro Street to Avondale Avenue.
  2. Lighting at Parks - $888,000: Outdoor lighting to improve safety and extend the usable hours at Morreene Road Park, Holton Career and Resource Center, and Edison Johnson Recreation Center parking lot.
  3. Playground Improvements to Parks - $762,000: Add a shade structure at Bay-Hargrove Park; add a shade structure and new playground at Carroll Street Park; and add a shade structure and new playground to Southern Boundaries Park.
  4. Skate Park at Duke Park - $347,000: Create a skate park with movable equipment to increase access to skating.
  5. Teen Equipment at Recreation Centers - $85,000: Upgrade equipment, such as computers and games, at the Durham Teen Center at Lyon Park, Holton Career and Resource Center, Walltown Recreation Center, W.D. Hill Recreation Center, and Weaver Street Recreation Center.
  6. Crosswalks with Murals - $352,000: Crosswalks for pedestrian safety featuring public art at the intersections of Lynch Street and Mangum Street; Roxboro Road and Lynch Street; and University Drive at the Rockwood Center.
  7. Bathroom at Cook Road Park - $330,000: Build a new bathroom facility.
  8. Sustainable Improvements to Parks - $110,000: Install water bottle filling stations, bike repair stations, and solar power charging stations to improve sustainability and encourage physical activity at CM Herndon Park, Duke Park, Lyon Park, Merrick-Moore Park, Solite Park, Twin Lakes Park, and Westover Park.
  9. Stagville Monument - $275,000: Create an artistic and educational monument with local artists honoring the formerly enslaved people of the Stagville Plantation and their descendants for a City-owned site downtown.
  10. Security Measures for Durham Housing Authority Properties - $110,000: Resident-requested safety improvements including cameras, deadbolt locks, and improved lighting in the Cornwallis Road Community and Preiss-Steele Place.

According to Holland, these 10 proposals are from the one-time project ideas residents submitted in late 2022. “Last November, we collected ideas on how to distribute funding for selected projects that were prioritized around equity using a citywide asset map,” Holland said. “This map allowed residents to submit their ideas and was then used to help guide our volunteer budget delegates, our PB Durham Steering Committee, and City staff to develop those ideas that benefited our most underserved and underrepresented communities into the 10 proposals now up for voting.”

Once residents have voted for their preferred projects, the funding requests for the top projects that total $2.4 million will go before the City Council for their review and approval in winter 2023, with project implementation beginning shortly thereafter.

Previous projects in PB Durham Cycle I, which funded 18 projects using $2.4 million, included physical infrastructure projects, such as playgrounds, bus shelters, and public art; technology improvement projects, such as solar panels on bus shelters for charging mobile devices; and community enhancement projects, such as planting street trees.

For Cycle II, PB Durham formed a grant program for Durham-based nonprofits and community organizations offering COVID-19 relief assistance. To do this, City Council approved $1 million for 22 organizations directly serving residents impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as well as organizations addressing issues contributing to racial, economic, and inequities in the Bull City.

For more information, visit the PB Durham website, send an email to PB Durham staff, or call (919) 560-4111, ext. 20290. Residents are also encouraged to follow PB Durham on Facebook, X, formerly known as Twitter, and Instagram for the latest information.

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