According to Reconnect Rochester, in Monroe County from 2012-2021, over 5,000 crashes involved bicyclists and pedestrians, and ten people die on our local streets every year as a result of these crashes.

To help resolve this issue, School #17 families, residents of the JOSANA neighborhood, and a team of community partners came together on Saturday, May 14 to transform the intersection of Orange and Orchard Streets as part of the Complete Streets Makeover project. It was a fun-filled day of community involvement, complete with music and food, as volunteers worked with street architects to paint the pavement and install a variety of new traffic safety features.

“Our goal is to bring people together to collaborate on a fun project that creates a safer space for kids and families to walk, bike and play,” said Mike Bulger, Healthy Communities Project Coordinator at Common Ground Health. “After hosting Complete Streets Makeover events in 2018 and 2019, we took a break for two years due to the pandemic. Our reemergence this year was amazing.”

More than 150 people from the neighborhood and school communities attended throughout the day, including residents, teachers, students and parents. To make the area safer for pedestrians and bicyclists, the makeover project included enhanced signage, curb extensions, temporary speed cushions, and a street mural designed by local artist Shawn Dunwoody. The design was created by Stantec, which donated professional engineering services for the project. Students and community members also beautified the space with fence art and flower planters.

“There were people painting the street, kids painting planter boxes with their own designs, there was a cookout, a DJ, and we had folks getting to know one another, sharing their connection to the space. Everyone came together to build a safer street and they built new relationships as well.”

Check out this photo gallery to see all the incredible photos from the Complete Streets Makeover event!

Preparing for next year’s event


Planning for next year’s event is already underway. The Complete Streets Makeover Steering Committee met on June 24 and they intend to bring the event to more neighborhoods across the city of Rochester.


In the meantime, please remember, it's always the right time to advocate for safe streets. If you have concerns about traffic safety in your neighborhood, get involved in making public spaces more engaging and fun for kids.


For more information on the Complete Streets Makeover program, please visit the Reconnect Rochester website.