On the morning of Friday May 19th, the Pendleton Heights Neighborhood Association was gifted with a Neighborhood Rising Fund grant from Community Capital Funds.* This NRF grant wholly serves as the foundation for The Pendleton Heights Fairy Lights & Murals Project.
Phase 1, Spring-Summer 2023: Alley-adjacent neighbors will be provided with strings of solar lights that are to be placed along fences or outbuildings skirting their back lanes. This will be done to convey unity among PH residents, while brightening and increasing the safety of these dimly lit spaces. The lights will be distributed as alley sweeps are completed beginning in June.
Phase 2, Autumn 2023: It's been proven time and again in cities throughout the world that murals discourage tagging. Because PH has seen an uptick in tagging in our alleys over the past few years, we needed a solution beyond chemical removal or continually painting over it. Through ongoing conversations between PH neighbors, PHNA, and the Kansas City Art Institute, the most sensible answer to our dilemma has officially come about.
Under the supervision of PH resident and KCAI Assistant Professor Hector Casanova, KCAI students will interface with neighbors along Sage, Forest, Shamrock & Jade Alleys, with a focus on properties that have been tagged, or identified as vulnerable to tagging. Homeowners will engage with KCAI students on what they would personally like to express via the mural to be installed on their property. Once a design is created and has received the homeowner's approval, it will move on for the approval of their neighbors. After this part of the process is completed, KCAI artists will commence with the installations. To make things more fun, neighbors of all ages will be invited to participate in the hands on portion of the project.
Most alley-adjacent neighbors are eligible to receive lighting, providing that they have a fence or outbuilding on which to install them. These structures must skirt their back lane. Out of respect for our historic district, only fences, outbuildings, and retaining walls that abut the alleys will be eligible for murals.
We look forward to the evolution of the Pendleton Heights Fairy Lights & Murals Project in the knowledge that, as our alleys begin to serve as outdoor galleries and for neighborly socializing, property-related crimes in PH will indeed continue to decline.
For more information:
Linda Fleischman PHNA VP (general queries or about lighting)
Hector Casanova KCAI Assistant Professor (queries regarding murals or installation timelines)
*2023 funding for CCF is provided by Altcap, H & R Block, the Hall Family Foundation, & US Bank