Our Projects

Our collaborative has a wide breadth of projects and we continue to add more as we listen to the communities’ needs. Our projects vary in their complexity and impact ranging from installing residential gardens, providing microloans to small businesses, to constructing new affordable housing units in the community. Find out more about our growing list of projects below!

Transformative Climate Communities (TCC) Grant

Expand Urban Agriculture and Access to Healthy, Organic Produce

Mudtown Farms Food Waste Diversion

Project Overview: Establish a food waste prevention and food rescue program that will result in the redistribution of 200,000 lbs. of food to local Watts Residents, and will divert 250,000 lbs. of food waste from landfills each year.

Watts Labor and Community Action Committee (WLCAC)(Lead)

Total Funding:

Community Garden at Markham Middle School

Project Overview:
Expansion and program support for Edwin Markham Middle School's one-acre garden to build the first in the nation school garden and living lab working with a cleantech incubator. Together, we are deploying several energy and water saving technologies, creating local green jobs, educating students and empowering the community on gardening and climate resiliency. Project plans also include distributing produce grown in the garden and distribution/planting of 100 shade trees.

Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (Lead), LAUSD

Total Funding:

Watts Yardners Program

Project Overview:
50 residential yards will be transformed into urban mini-farms complete with edible landscaping and fruit trees.

Watts Labor and Community Action Committee (WLCAC)(Lead)

Total Funding:

Provide More Afforable And Sustainable Housing

Jordan Downs Phase S2

Project Overview: New construction of an 81-unit affordable housing development consisting of 18 one-bedroom units, 33 two-bedroom units, 29 three-bedroom units, and 1 four-bedroom unit. All the units will be deed-restricted to households earning up to 50% of Area Median Income (AMI).   In addition, the project will provide bicycle education and safety training for families and youth in the Jordan Downs housing development. East Side Riders, will be organizing classes, recruiting participants, and facilitating certifications. (See the B.E.A.S.T. project overview below for more info on Bicycle Education and Safety Training classes).

Michaels Development Co. (Lead), East Side Riders

Total Funding:

Solar Watts

Project Overview:
Install rooftop solar panels on 54 qualifying single-family residences in Watts.

GRID Alternatives

Total Funding:

Energy Retrofit

Project Overview:
Installation of energy retrofits for 180 homes in Watts. Retrofits include replacements for lighting, HVAC, water heater and more.

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles

Total Funding:

Increase Low And No-Carbon Transportation

Dash Bus Electrification

Project Overview:
The DASH is going electric! The DASH Watts bus route will be improved with 10 battery-electric buses that will replace existing CNG/propane buses and add 5 charging stations to create the first fully electric local bus fleet in Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT)

Total Funding:

Megawatts Electric Vehicle Car Share

Project Overview:
Provide a car-sharing program using 15 all-electric vehicles available 24-hours/day with charging stations installed at three locations in Watts.

Watts Labor and Community Action Committee, Green Commuter

Total Funding:

Increase Community Green Space And Expand Our Tree Canopy

Weigand Elementary Urban Tree/Rain Gardens

Project Overview:
A new 2400 sq. ft rain garden and 43 native trees will be planted around Weigand Elementary, and an additional 1500 fruit trees will be distributed to local community members.


Total Funding:

Watts Cool Schools

Project Overview:
Create four shadier, cooler school campuses by removing asphalt paving and installing cool paving, planting 112 trees, to create green educational outdoor learning areas at Weigand Elementary, Compton Ave. Elementary, 96th St. Elementary and 112th St. Elementary schools.

TreePeople (Lead) Los Angeles. Unified School District (LAUSD)

Total Funding:

Greening the Blue Line

Project Overview:
Create a tree canopy in the mile radius surrounding the 103rd St. Station of the Metro Blue Line through the planting of 200 trees.

TreePeople (Lead), LA Metro

Total Funding:

Century Gateway Park

Project Overview:
Construct 0.62-acre urban park with local and drought tolerant plants, 35 new trees, and  passive recreation.

Partners: The Michaels Organization (Lead)

Total Funding: $428,575


Freedom Tree Park

Project Overview: Construct 1-acre urban park with passive recreation, drought tolerant landscaping and irrigation, 35 new trees, and 95% of the park will be composed of permeable surfaces.

Partners: The Michaels Organization (Lead), Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles

Total Funding: $1,157,900

Greening Public Housing

Project Overview: Plant 200 large shade trees at three public housing sites: Gonzaque Village, Imperial Courts, and Nickerson Gardens.

Partners: North East Trees (Lead), Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles

Total Funding: $275,475.32

Greening Watts

Project Overview: Plant 2,000 trees throughout Watts along streets, on school campuses, in parks and on residential properties.

Partners: TreePeople, North East Trees

Total Funding: $1,055,917.68

Make Our Streets Safer For Walking And Biking

B.E.A.S.T. - Bicycle Education and Safety Classes

Project Overview: Implement a Bike Safety & Education Program.

East Side Riders

Total Funding:

Wilmington Ave. Great Streets

Project Overview:
Construct ½ mile of urban greening and pedestrian/cyclist mobility improvements including 40 street trees.

Streets LA (Lead), Grant Housing EDC

Total Funding:

Walkbike Watts Mobility Improvements

Project Overview:
Construction of 5.2 miles of bike lanes and installation of 25 pedestrian improvements.

City of LA- Department of Transportation (LADOT)

Total Funding:
$3,044,260 + $38,500 (Grant Administration) = $3,082,760

Walkbike Watts Safe Routes to School

Project Overview: We Care Outreach and Urban Peace Institute are working to make routes to school safer by providing services like student safety advocacy groups, walking school buses, and more.

Partners: We Care Outreach, Urban Peace Institute (UPI)

Total Funding: $322,388.89

Walkbike Watts Cultural Trail

Project Overview: Installation of an arts & cultural walking path through Watts. Accessible by foot, bicycle, or wheelchair, the Cultural Trail will connect the Watts Towers Arts Center Campus to public transportation and other local sites.

Partners: City of LA- Department of Cultural Affairs (Lead), Streets LA

Total Funding: $428,499.99

Choice Neighborhood Initiatives (CNI) Grant

Resilient Homes

Project Overview: Exterior beautification and energy improvements for individual homeowners in Watts. Homeowners fill out an application to receive improvements and are individually assessed for eligibility.

Partners: GRID Alternatives, Habitat for Humanity, TreePeople

Total Funding: $1,906,604

Mudtown Farms Kitchen Incubator

Project Overview: 2,400 square-foot commercial kitchen facility complete state of the art kitchen equipment and prep stations, ample storage space (refrigerated, frozen, dry), office/ meeting space, and other programmable space. The Commercial kitchen will serve as a training facility and home to the food-based business incubator program.

Partners: Watts Labor Community Action Committee

Total Funding: $1,906,604; PY 48 CDBG: $413,479

Our Town Business Facade Improvements

Project Overview: This project will fund business façade improvements for up to 20 small Watts businesses. The project will be administered by the Coalition for Responsible Community Development (CRCD). The maximum grant award for each business owner will be $50,000. Selected businesses will also receive workshops and/or one-on-one coaching, and connection to other supports to help them remain competitive in today’s market.

Partners: Coalition for Responsible Community Development, BusinessSource Center

Total Funding: $737,296

Watts Microloan Program

Project Overview: The establishment of a sovereign Watts MicroBusiness Loan Fund, administered by Macedonia Community Development Corporation, to provide loans between $500 to $50,000 (average $5,000) to up to 300 start-up and/or current small business owners in Watts that are unable to obtain financing from traditional lending sources because they lack traditional sources of credit. Businesses can use loan funds for working capital, furniture and fixtures, inventory and equipment.

Partners: Macedonia Community Development Corporation, BusinessSource Center

Total Funding: $805,000

Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)

ThinkWatts HQ

Project Overview: Funding for programming in a 1,400 sf storefront which will be used to teach financial literacy; host a Maker Space, recording studio, and STEAM lab; and incubate clothing brands & marketing businesses.

Partners: ThinkWatts Foundation

Total Funding: $100,000 (PY 47 CDBG)

Watts Empowerment Center Film & Music Studio

Project Overview: Develop a 4,000 sf full-scale TV, film, and music studio at Imperial Courts. Open to the community to learn about technical recording, editing, and filming skills. Ultimately will be used to showcase finished products through outdoor movie nights and mini concerts. Mentorships and summer internships with larger studios, talent agencies, and music labels for students.

Partners: Elevate Hope

Total Funding: $502,530 (PY 47 CDBG); $200,000 (PY48 CDBG)

Morning Star Sports Complex

Project Overview: Upgrades to a community-accessible playground and basketball court for clean, safe, and well-lt recreational space. After school program with homework help and daily meals for community youth.

Partners: Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church

Total Funding: $100,000 (PY 47 CDBG); $150,000 (PY 48 CDBG)

Liberty Hill Foundation and Sharefest

Green Alley Phases 1 and 2

Project Overview: Transform an alley that local residents described as an eyesore for many years and transform it into a safer, greener, and more pleasant space for the neighborhood.

Partners: CD15, Sharefest
Phase 1

Total Funding: $10,982.44

Clean California

Jordan Down Beautification and Litter Abatement

Project Overview: The Master Plan for the new Jordan Downs Urban Village calls for the replacement of 700 outdated apartments with a total of 1,400 housing units accommodating a mix of incomes, as well as a retail center and a community center. This community severely lacks public open space, and historically trash has been a symbolic problem in the community. This project addresses this problem with the construction of four parks, installation of "smart" compacting public trash cans throughout the campus at strategic locations near the new parks and housing, an educational outreach program that addresses historical litter inequities in the community, and a decorative public art component with significance to the local residents and stakeholders.

South LA Rising

Project Overview: South Los Angeles Rising targets two underserved neighborhoods across seven project sites in South Los Angeles – Willowbrook and Watts – impacting the health and well-being of both communities. The project funds a two-year program that combines new trash capturing enclosures and bins, and activates community members through litter abatement education campaigns and beautification events through a Green Ambassador Program.