Friday, February 16, 2007

Responding to people with class

During our recent trip to Common Ground Development in New York City, we toured three properties the organization has restored to use as single room occupancy apartments for low-income and formerly homeless persons.

Their work is stellar.

The buildings are all emaculate. The restorations exquisite.

Most importantly, the residents are enjoying great and encouraging living environments.

During our trip, we witnessed no problems with loitering, drunkenness or any sort of disturbance caused by any of the over 1,200 tenants leasing apartments from Common Ground.

The environments are key to the success they are experiencing.

The environments establish an expectation among the residents. No one could reside in such great places and be a "bum."

One of the features I appreciated, even in the bitter cold, was the rooftop patios and gardens. We were told that the tenants really took advantage of these spaces, especially in the springtime. [Forgive the quality of these photos. I captured them with my cell phone.]

The vision of Common Ground is amazing. The results are phenomenal.

What a model.

Talk about taking people seriously and responding to everyone with class, grace and quality!


owldog said...

Is it to late to have the building on Akard to copy this model?

Michael Davis said...

Another good example of SRO that works.

I just think that there are some people in our City that you'll never be able to convince. But you got the money for your project anyway, which is great.

I'm in your corner, and look forward the CityWalk's grand opening.

Mike Davis
Dallas Progress

Larry James said...

Thanks for the posts.

Appreciate the encouragement, Michael. Still would love to buy your lunch sometime.

Owldog, as a matter of fact, the CityWalk@Akard project was modeled from the beginning after the Common Ground model and we will have a great roof deck feature as well! It was a "60 Minutes" report that got us jazzed about our project and what was possible for the homeless and low-income labor in Dallas.

Anonymous said...

Wish I had a patio garden on top of a building in NYC. Can I get on the waiting list? It sounds and looks like an awesome place.

Can't wait to see the finished building here.


John Greenan said...

It's my understanding that the waiting list is more than six months long--but you will also have to meet the income restrictions on the property and pass a background check.

Larry James said...

jt, thanks for the post! I bet we can cut you a deal here in Dallas!