The Time has Come to Choose our Fulton

Fulton Block Builders follows the Healthy Neighborhood Initiative brought forth by Don Poland an urban geographer and Charles Buki a nationally recognized housing and neighborhood expert. The Healthy Neighborhood Initiative supports homeowners making intentional decisions that impact their community, property values, pride and sense of civic engagement. Fulton, New York, much like many small cities in America used to be one of the great ones. A city of people not just full of pride, but of good neighborliness as well. Yet for the last several decades Fulton’s small city charm has retreated in profound ways. The people of Fulton have invested less and less in our community. 

Neighbors have stopped talking one to another. New people have moved in and neighborhoods feel different. Troubling trends have been taking root. Homes are being painted less frequently. Fences repaired less often. Streets are maintained with less vigor and flowers are seen on fewer properties. It is through these small decisions, Fulton, like so many other communities that have suffered decades of disinvestment, is at a crossroads.

Now is the time for Fulton to make a decision. Will we work together to bring back engagement or accept this new disinvested approach? Will we choose beauty or charmless? Will we work together to replace self-repeating disinvestment behaviors or will we accelerate our positives with self-repeating investment activities?

The fact is, much of Fulton is comprised of hardworking families who take good care of their homes and want their neighbors to do the same. The central task now facing Fulton, is to do right by those living in or being from Fulton. The community as a whole and citizens acting individually must decide to stop self-defeating disinvestment, both financial and civic and start reinvesting. Now is the time to harness the overwhelming desire on the part of so many Fulton households to live in a beautiful, vibrant, full of pride city. To capture the desire on the part of Friends of Fulton Parks, Fulton Footpaths, CNY Arts, Business Banners across the city and the Lake Neatahwanta clean-up.

Some will say it can’t be done without new business coming, without zoning being enforced and without the city as a partner. All of which is true, each has a part in creating the underlying essence of what is needed, PRIDE. 

Charles Buki states “Pride is what comes through when mailboxes and house numbers shine, when lawns are mowed, snow is shoveled and leaves are raked. Pride comes through in washed windows, fresh coats of paint, holiday lighting and landscaped yards. Pride is the name of the game. It is the essence of stability which in turn is the backbone of good schools, a strong tax base, a vibrant civic and cultural life, and a thriving downtown.” For Fulton’s neighborhoods to become vibrant, families already living in Fulton have to want to stay, and those visiting, have to conclude they might want to live here too. 

It is the mission of Fulton Block Builders to coordinate efforts to make this so. For more information on the Fulton Block Builders and the Healthy Neighborhood Initiative contact Linda Eagan at fultonblockbuilders@gmail.com or call (315) 529-9181.

Heather McCoy

315 Designs, PO Box 282, Fulton