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Connects Against Crime: Bringing Change To Wellington Heights
CEDAR RAPIDS, IA (CBS 2/FOX 28) -- The American Dream is within reach for Ruquaiyah Muhammad.
“I’d like to be able to invest in one of those homes set up to be stable and safe on a long term basis,” Muhammad said.
The single mother of 3 says there are a few obstacles, however.
“It's really a communication barrier between the landlords and some of the community programs,” Muhammad.
She is among the Wellington Heights residents giving feedback at St. Paul's United Methodist Church Thursday.
Ryan Garcia says there's a lot to build on.
“We had a sense from the outside that this was a unique and special neighborhood,” Garcia said.
Garcia is a design planner, brought in by the city from Wisconsin. He's here to help revamp the neighborhood.
“It's had its share of challenges in the past,” Garcia said.
He and his team spent 2 days gathering public opinion - from landlords, to street lighting.
“The end result is going to be a neighborhood plan that set the vision and set the agenda for the future of the neighborhood,” Garcia said.
Nadine Borngraeber didn't hesitate to add to that agenda.
“My son lives in Wellington Heights, and has two houses here,” Borngraeber said.
She's aware of what people say when it comes to crime.
“You shouldn't even walk through those areas, or drive through those areas,” Borngraeber said.
She sees things differently.
“That's wrong, I think Wellington Heights is poised to become the neighborhood to live in,” Borngraeber said.
For Ruquaiyah, it may be the perfect place to find her dream.
“I would want to be a part of that.”
Garcia says attractions for children and families, street lighting, and increasing pride in individual property were the top three concerns.
He says they will take all this back to develop a plan. No word yet on when that plan will be ready.