The Project Lighten Up initiative seeks to use the installation of lights as a means to improve perceptions of safety and as a tool to help reduce certain rates of crime in the Newhallville neighborhood. It is part of the larger approach of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED). This approach identifies crime as a product of the environment and recognizes that environmental design plays a central role in promoting safety.
The installation of lights by Project Lighten Up is part of broader efforts by Newhallville residents, the Newhallville Community Management Team, and the New Haven Police Department to foster a safe and well-lit community in Newhallville. Lt. Manmeet Colon has given steadfast support of this project and our new intern from the Dwight Hall at Yale, Joseph Bennett, is excited to work with her and the NHS team to continue the initiative.
The project began eight years ago out of a partnership between Alan Kendrix, a community activist, and Pastor Donald Morris. Conversations with Newhallville residents revealed a lack of proper lighting, whether a result of overgrown trees or the absence of functioning lights, to be a central concern in the neighborhood. In response to these concerns and with an understanding that good lighting plays a central role in promoting neighborhood safety, Kendrix and Morris worked to raise money to install lights around Newhallville.
Through a series of meetings with the City Engineering Department, eleven street lights on Lilac Street in 2012 received new LED lights. This began a collective effort with the support of NHS, the Newhallville Community Management Team, and the New Haven Police Department.
Through the GoFundMe campaign, we hope to raise $1,000 by the end of March. Contact Stephen Cremin-Endes, Director of Community Building & Organizing, with any questions about this program.