WHEDco collaborates with local merchants to build a vibrant business district in the Crotona Park East neighborhood surrounding Intervale Green. Our Community Development team helped launch the Southern Boulevard Merchant Association (SBMA), which works to attract businesses to vacant storefronts and bring shoppers to the area. WHEDco also works with City agencies, other local resources, and the Merchant’s Association to engage in capital improvements to beautify the neighborhood and improve safety, organize community events and increase foot traffic, and leverage this corridor’s transit hubs to revitalize the local economy.
WHEDco also commissions reports to give local merchants data crucial for their success, but not readily available to mom & pop shops, such as information on “retail leakage” – money spent by local residents outside of the neighborhood. This information serves as a critical resource for business owners, who are able to tailor their businesses to meet the community’s needs and ensure their own financial security.
In addition to the increased economic activity that the SBMA has generated, it also benefits residents by bringing the things they need for daily living closer to home, and improves the quality of life in the neighborhood by increasing street activity and helping cut crime.