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Want a Street Improvement for Your Neighborhood? Tell the City Council By October 13.

1:36 PM EDT on October 4, 2017

A map of the participatory budgeting proposals submitted so far. Image: NYC Council

Is the street corner near your apartment begging for a sidewalk extension? Could your local bus stop use a countdown clock or a bus bulb? If you have ideas for small-scale improvements to your neighborhood streets, tell the City Council: Nominations for projects to receive participatory budgeting funds will be accepted for the next nine days.

With participatory budgeting, New Yorkers vote on how to spend the discretionary funds allocated to their City Council district. This year, 31 council members are participating, and if you live in one of those districts, you have until October 13 to submit proposals for the 2018 round of funding.

Once nominations are submitted, committees of "budget delegates" narrow the list to a handful of projects for the public to choose from when voting starts in the spring, the week of April 7 to 15.

Now in its seventh year, participatory budgeting funds capital improvements -- projects that involve physical changes or purchasing equipment, as opposed to operating expenses like running more bus service. Transportation-related projects that receive funding are typically scaled to a single intersection or a handful of locations. While it won't fund entire street redesigns, it's a chance to make meaningful, targeted improvements.

Last year, street safety improvements near schools on Empire Boulevard and bus arrival clocks across the city were among the projects that received funding.

Other street safety projects came up short in the voting, including lighting improvements along the Hudson River Greenway's "Cherry Walk" and pedestrian safety improvements on Meeker Avenue in North Brooklyn and the Grand Concourse in the Bronx.

You can submit ideas to the City Council online. Ahead of the submission deadline, council members are also hosting "neighborhood assemblies" where constituents can discuss and workshop ideas together.

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