Along Highway 24 in North Oakland, neighbors are hatching a plot.

It’s a plot in the sense that it’s an almost conspiratorial plan against blight, neglect, and the separation and breakdown of a neighborhood. It’s also a plot in the sense that this plan involves transforming a parcel of land.

The proposal is to link two dead-end streets in North Oakland — which are currently joined by a secluded, 50-yard-long stretch of street that has been the site of general blight and decay, illegal dumping, graffiti, and the like — with the Grove-Shafter Garden.

In support of this plot, neighbors have launched an Indiegogo campaign.

Plot elements include:

  • building community
  • producing fresh local food
  • remaking a troubled street “into a space that brings residents together to produce something healthy, dynamic and beautiful”
  • offering a model that may be able to be used to help other blighted streets in Oakland
  • providing a healthy outlet for neighborhood children
  • crime reduction and cost savings for the City
  • allowing the decreased travel times of the highway to coexist with pleasant nearby neighborhood streets

With the initial City paperwork out of the way, the neighbors are seeking funding for the nuts and bolts of the new community garden — including fencing and planter boxes, compost bins and hoses, seeds and plants, soil and fertilizer, tables and chairs, water and electrical hookups, and of course, nuts and bolts.

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