1 Million for a New View project is headed to Camden

By Gray Hall, January 24, 2019

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CAMDEN, N.J. (WPVI) -- Public spaces have been turned into an illegal dumping site in many Camden, New Jersey areas, and without a doubt, this is an eyesore. 

"It's a mess around here, really bad and the city needs to do something about it. They are and they are not so basically they need to clean this mess up," said, Tonya Brown of Camden. 

Residents and leaders in Camden say areas like these are a nuisance and this is not what they want people to see when they are in Camden. 

But there is good news, at least seven illegal trash sites and areas of concern like this will soon disappear all thanks to a 1-million dollar Bloomberg Grant to help clean up the city. 

Camden County Freeholder Jeff Nash said, "It improves the community. It takes a dump site something like the tire site that was littering part of Camden only a few months ago. It changes it into something beautiful that the community can enjoy." 

The project is called 1 Million for a New View. 

The money will be used to transform illegal dumping sites into public art spaces throughout the city. 

The hope is that the funds will not only be used to clean up troubled spots but will also give the community a sense of pride and encourage them to love the place where they live. 

Meshka Mitchell of the Cooper's Ferry Partnership said, "When you see illegal dumping on an isolated road in the suburbs or a rural area, it is seen as an isolated incident and here in the city of Camden it helps to perpetuate every negative stereotype that you have heard about the city as well as its residents." 

The project will allow local artists and others to beautify the city and erase littered sections of the community that costs the city millions every year to clean up. 

For some, the transformation can't come soon enough. 

"Yes, that is good news but when are they going to do it, .is the question." We asked you want to see it done quickly? She said, "Yes." 

Areas targeted, will be those where thousands of people pass daily, like spots along Camden's rail, bike routes, and busy roads. 

Dedra Chandler of the Cooper's Ferry Partnership said, "I look forward to seeing some art that is not only beautifying our space but speaking to some of the challenges on our city and helping to move us forward." 

Over 200 cities across the country applied for the grant money. Camden is thankful it was selected and with several areas like this around the city. Leaders here say the money will be well spent.