Engaging Our Community

See the results of the INITIAL Participatory Design process! (PDF)

In addition to much-needed affordable senior housing, Haven Green will provide valuable and accessible green, open space to the community, through these guiding principles:

  • Maximize the open space
  • Engage the Community with Participatory Design
  • Connect the open space through the site to Mott and Elizabeth Streets
  • Retain Solar Access to the open space
  • Create a place of sanctuary

Recognizing the importance of the current green space, Haven Green’s proposal exceeds the requirements of the NYC HPD request for proposal by providing nearly 16,000 square feet of publicly-accessible open space and gardens, which will include programmed activities available to the community at large.

The gardens will be created as a place for neighbors to gather, soak up the sun and relax and will reflect the vision and identity of the community. Part of that means planting native flora. The proposed building massing will allow solar access to the gardens, permitting a wide variety of vegetation and plant life in the garden.

Download the Site PlanSolar Study and a partial Plant List for the open space.

You can still participate – take our anonymous survey and tell us what you think!

Engaging the Community: The Participatory Design Process

Engaging the community in a series of participatory design exercises is an integral part of the Haven Green development. Within this context, the design team facilitated a participatory design, or co-design, process that empowered community members to envision a successful re-imagining of the site. RiseBoro and Habitat NYC will sustain Community Engagement beyond garden design by working with local stakeholders and partners to cultivate a group who will share in the ongoing stewardship of the community green space. The expanded green space announced in 2022 will be added to the still open public participatory design process to ensure 21 Spring Street residents have a say in the expanded plan


What is Participatory Design?

Participatory design engages all stakeholders, including people who will utilize the garden, neighbors, local business owners and other members of the community to create places that are responsive to their needs. The process recognizes the community as experts in how the garden should look, feel, and operate. We believe that a successful garden must be rooted in this community expertise. Our participatory design process will envision a new garden that reflects the vision and identity of its users.


Why Participatory Design?

The site is a treasured neighborhood outdoor space that is well used by the community for a wide array of educational, recreational, and cultural activities and events. It is a part of a rich tapestry of community gardens in Lower Manhattan. The Development Team believes that the community should have a say in the design of the space.


How does Participatory Design work?

Participatory Design is a process, not a style embedded in public design “charrettes,” or workshops, where the Haven Green development team and the community will come together to understand the special characteristics and uses of the current garden, and develop a vision for the future garden’s design. The participatory design process will be an open and inclusive dialogue to create new community visions for the garden’s future.


HPD Housing Applications

Housing Connect

Neighborhood Recreation

Parks and Open space:
Grand/Lafayette open space
First Street Green Culture Park
Lt. Petrosino Square
Sara D. Roosevelt Park
Washington Square Park
Father Fagan Park
Spring Street Park
Perez Square
Columbus Park
Fiorello LaGuardia Park

DeSalvio Playground
Vesuvio Spring /Thompson playground
Hester Street Playground (Sara D. Roosevelt Park)
Rivington Playground (Sara D. Roosevelt Park)
Houston Playground (Sara D. Roosevelt Park)
Vesuvio Playground

Liz Christy Garden
LaGuardia Corner Gardens
Gardens in Sara D. Roosevelt Park:
Elizabeth Hubbard Memorial Garden
Audubon Society Plot
Hua Mei Bird Sanctuary
New Forsyth Conservancy

Development and Programmatic Partners

Habitat for Humanity New York City
RiseBoro Community Partnership
Pennrose, LLC