All it takes is a dream — and $1 million.
The Hudson River Foundation will distribute dozens of grants — between $2,000 and $25,000 — to groups with an idea of how to pretty up the neighborhoods near Newtown Creek.
“The Foundation is really good at seeing where strategically small amounts of money can make a big difference,” said Newtown Creek Alliance member Kate Zidar. “It’s a funder that will make sure that people who should be working together are working together.”
All you need is a great idea for a project and a nonprofit, school or government agency to sponsor it before the April 22 deadline. Two public forums to discuss the funding process will be held on April 4 and April 12.
The Hudson River Foundation has a long track record funding small environmental projects in Greenpoint, including $2,000 to a forestry conference’s tour of Newtown Creek in 2009, $15,000 to reduce stormwater runoff with tree plantings in 2008, and $10,000 for a video project that filmed the changing Greenpoint waterfront.
Environmental hopefuls are already envisioning a wide range of waterfront projects including more trees, expanded park space, and rehabilitated docks along Newtown Creek.
Community Board 1 resident Dewey Thompson, who hopes to build a boathouse in the basement of a manufacturing building at the edge of Manhattan Avenue, thinks Hudson River can help purchase small sailboats for the public’s use.
“We’ll train people, boat safety and boat skills, you ‘ll get certified, and then you can take out a boat when you want to and go out on the water,” said Thompson.
The $1 million in grants is part of a $10-million punishment levied against the city in 2008 for a decade of violating state pollution laws.
Hudson River Foundation application meeting at the Newtown Creek Visitors Center [329 Greenpoint Ave. at Kingsland Avenue in Greenpoint, (212) 483-7667], 6:30–8 pm, April 4 and April 12.