“The Garden State” is a schema that conjures certain images: the beautiful Jersey shore, Atlantic City, traffic on I-95, traffic on the Parkway, traffic on I-287…the Jersey Devil.
Wouldn’t it be great if Jersey could rejuvenate “The Garden State” motto to conjure a thriving ecology where industry, culture, and community exist in support of each other, like vines twining to reach the sun?
There are three things happening in New Jersey that excite me. All have to do with cross-sector partnerships, creativity, and innovation; all are bettering New Jersey’s communities and positioning our state to take a step forward in redefining itself.
ONE: The Gandhi Garden
Nine months ago, East Hanover Street in Trenton was equal parts boarded up buildings, vacant lots, low-income housing…and artist office/work space.
We’ve all heard that story; many of us, including me, are living it. The story we may not all know is the rapid transformation and strategic development that a cross-sector partnership can bring about, like the one forged between the Trenton Downtown Association (TDA), a destination marketing/economic development organization and the SAGE Coalition, an urban beautification NFP made up of a diverse group of Trenton-based visual and performing artists, musicians, teachers, and fabricators. Read the rest of this entry »