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City hosts party & (yard) makeovers

Potted plants, encouragement distributed

Posted: September 19, 2008 8:58 p.m.
Updated: November 21, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Heidi Cali selects a plant, distributed by the city to help residents add landscaping to their yards, during Thursday evening's "Extreme Neighborhood Makeover" program in the East Newhall area of the city.

Santa Clarita code enforcement officers hope the party favors passed out at a recent block party gives an east Newhall neighborhood everything they need to make their community a better place.

City officials threw a block party on Market Street to kick off round two of the Extreme Neighborhood Makeover program and distributed pamphlets and potted plants to teach and encourage residents to spruce up their yards.

“I’m very proud of my neighborhood here in New-hall, and you should be as well,” Councilwoman Marsha McLean said to a crowd of a few dozen residents on Market Street Thursday. “That’s why we’re here, to help you be proud of your neighborhood.”

City officials threw a block party in June in an aging Canyon Country neighborhood with overgrown landscaping, graffiti and street potholes. The city notified 92 residents of the common code violations in their neighborhood and about 80 percent of the residents are making progress, according to Community Preservation Officer Cruz Caldera.

City crews then fixed sidewalks and planted trees throughout the neighborhood.

Officials plan to notify 150 to 200 east Newhall residents next week that city code enforcement officers will check properties in 30 days for code violations, said Supervising Community Preservation Officer Curtis Williams.

“I’ve been pretty inspired by seeing what’s been done in Canyon Country,” he said. “They’ve seen remarkable progress.”
When one neighbor starts cleaning up their yard, another neighbor will follow, Williams said.

“This will be pretty infectious,” he said.

Graffiti and trash in the neighborhood decreases property values, said Aurora Chavez, an east Newhall resident for more than 20 years.

“There’s been a lot of improvements but there are still many needs,” she said.


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