The Before & After, Part 7

The National Association of REALTORS® encourages our state and local REALTOR® Associations to partner with others to make their communities better places to live.   Our Placemaking Grant is available to our REALTOR® Associations to help fund local Placemaking projects.  Since the launch of the grant in 2014, we have approved over $870,00 in funding for over 300 community placemaking projects.   If you have an unused, underused, unwelcoming site in your community, maybe it’s time to transform it into a welcoming destination for the community to gather.

As part of the grant requirements, we ask for a before photo of the site and an after photo of the completed project to show how the site was transformed.

Here are some of those completed projects.   Also see the blog posts on other projects:

Palos Verdes Peninsula Association of REALTORS® (CA)


Palos Verdes Peninsula Assn. of REALTORS (PVPAR) received a Placemaking Grant from the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) to assist with the Malaga Cove Beautification Project (Parkland Triangle at Via Ramon & Via Pinale). The site now includes a beautiful walkway towards the Malaga Cove Library and shopping area and drought resistant plants to be enjoyed in the years to come.  The NAR Placemaking Grant, Malaga Cove HOA (MCHOA) contribution & personal donations from the community funded this effort.  The PVPAR Young Professionals Network partnered with MCHOA volunteers & Bennett Landscapers to provide the manual labor to complete this job.  It was such an honor to be a part of this project.

Arkansas Valley Board of REALTORS® (CO)


A vacant lot was transformed into to a fun place to gather which was enhanced with artwork featuring the works of a local artist and reflects the town’s agricultural culture. The pocket park gives the Lamar residents a new place to gather where children can play and everyone can enjoy a meal, read a book, attend community dance classes, concerts, and film nights, or participate in other types of activities.

Mid-Iowa Regional Board of REALTORS® (IA)


We were contacted by the Conrad Chamber-Main Street organization about partnering with them on creating a usable space on an empty lot in their downtown area. The lot had formerly been used by a car dealership but the business had closed many years ago and the lot had become overgrown. The project started by painting a mural on the side of the building.  We then worked on the landscaping with the help of a professional landscaper, who donated items, and purchased a bench to be placed on the lot. Volunteers from the Board and the Conrad community pitched in to build the space that will be used for many years by the community and those coming to the community for events. We felt that rural communities, such as Conrad, are often overlooked as recipients of grants and were so pleased when NAR informed us that we would receive the funding to help complete the project. Visitors to Conrad are now welcomed to town with a pleasing green space.

RealSource Association of Realtors® (NJ)


The Association partnered with the Waldwick Historical Society to build new benches, plant shrubberies, spread mulch, and create a park-like setting around the Waldwick Erie Interlocking Tower.  The residents of the community, history buffs, and railroad fans are thrilled that the area has become a place where friends and neighbors can learn about the important role that manned signal/switching towers played in the operation of the railroad and the economic impact of the railroad to the community.

Southeast Iowa Board of REALTORS®


The grant helped to fund seating, lighting and landscaping for a complete renovation of an unused alley way in Oskaloosa. The alley is now used as an appealing community space, filled with local art and activated with entertainment and special events. The project was recognized as “2016 Signature Project of the Year” by former Governor, Terry Branstad.