News and Notes, November 2010

Join the House Tour Team

After 10 years of dedicated service to the Park Slope Civic Council’s House Tour, Candace Woodward will be relinquishing her duties as house tour coordinator in June 2011. We are looking for two enthusiastic people interested in shadowing her for the next several months to learn the process of planning and executing a successful House Tour and ultimately taking over her leadership role.

Our annual tour offers a look beyond the neighborhood’s brownstone facades into homes chosen for their history and beauty. Proceeds from the Tour are used to fund scholarships for local students and grants to local schools, charities, and cultural organizations.

The responsibilities of house tour coordinator can be easily divided into two co-chair roles: a home-oriented chair; and a fundraising, publicity, and ticket-sales chair. A collaborative process, the House Tour relies on the skills of a dedicated and experienced team of volunteers who are already in place to support the co-chairs in all facets of planning.

If you are looking for a way to contribute to an important community event that highlights what makes our neighborhood special, this is the job for you! Contact us at to further discuss this special opportunity.


Tree replacements

City Councilmember Brad Lander is trying to replace any neighborhood trees destroyed by the Park Slope tornado. You can send an e-mail with the address of lost trees to his office, at


Curb Your Appetite

New York City’s Department of Transportation is sponsoring a pilot program so restaurant owners can install summertime outdoor cafes in nearby parking lanes rather than on sidewalks. The new initiative, called the Pop-Up Cafe Pilot Program, would grant permits for seating on the street side of the curb in places where too-narrow sidewalks prevent outdoor dining.

According to the DOT, the first pop-up cafe was opened last summer on Pearl Street in Manhattan; the restaurant reported increased business and a warm welcome from the local community. The department wants expand the program to last the next two summers at 12 locations throughout the city. If accepted, the restaurant must pay for design, construction, and maintenance of the licensed pop-up cafe.

Applications are due Dec. 3. Forms and technical requirements are available at


House Audit

National Grid has unveiled a new program to improve energy efficiency for residential buildings through a range of incentives, including low-cost home audits and air sealing.

The utility’s new Enhanced Home Sealing Incentives Program offers a custom comprehensive home assessment and up to two hours of air sealing for a $50 fee. “It’s a full energy audit,” said Jeremy R.M. Shannon, principal architect of Prospect Architecture, at November’s Civic Council Trustees meeting. “It evaluates health and safety, electricity in the home, and how best to insulate your home.”

The program is available to homeowners in one- to four-unit owner-occupied residential buildings with heat provided by National Grid. For more information, including additional energy efficiency incentives, or to register, call 877.741.4330 or e-mail

from the November 2010 Civic News