Hester Street led a broad public engagement campaign to engage community members, current and potential park users, and key stakeholders, to help transform Prospect Park’s Rose Garden into a place for all of Brooklyn’s diverse communities. HST’s community engagement process aimed to be inclusive and accessible, community-driven, and interactive and innovative in its approach to inform the design and uses for the rehabilitated Rose Garden, an underused space located in the northeast corner of the Park.
Over the course of the year, we spoke to more than 2,000 local stakeholders in a variety of ways to gather ideas for the types of activities and uses that community members want to see at the re-imagined garden. We hosted large public workshops, a series of focus groups as well as other informal engagement opportunities such as tabling at Prospect Park, scavenger hunts, walking tours, 3D model building, and pop-up activities to gather input from visitors and neighbors of the Park. The input gathered through this process informed Guiding Principles to ensure that future development and improvement efforts are founded in key community priorities, as well as site and feasibility factors. In addition, community input received through the Rose Garden process revealed a deep desire to create spaces and programs that that reflect the rich history of the east side of the Park. We are thrilled that a memorial honoring the first black U.S. Congresswoman, Shirley Chisolm, was chosen.