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storefront enhancement guide

project outline ¡Revive! came out of a partnership between Northfield Community (Staten Island), NYC Department of Small Business Services and the School of Visual Arts (SVA). The goal of the program was for a team of grad-level students to create design-oriented solutions to address some of the community’s most pressing issues. Through presentations, on-site surveys, interviews, and visual assessments, the SVA design team (Bess, Ana, and Nathalia) recommendation to create a model of improved storefront visualization that builds off of the NYPD’s Safe Zone model. The main idea is to use inexpensive materials and easy steps to enhance storefronts.

We want to bring people together, strengthen safety, and welcome shoppers.

Mexico Supermarket at 170 Port Richmond Avenue was selected to be the model that other businesses could easily replicate. The event took place Saturday, August 13th 2011, from 2 to 6 pm. We bought one can of exterior paint ($40) for the stucco walls on the edges of the storefront and one quart of black Rustoleum exterior paint ($15) for the security gate trim. The other materials we were able to borrow from the storeowner and generous people from the neighborhood (rags, ladder, soap, paper towels, drop cloths, ladders, broom, and sandpaper). For enthusiastic volunteers, we partnered with EyeOpeners, Youth Against Violence. During the event, five youth and two directors helped us from the program!

If you are interested in joining ¡Revive! and enhancing your storefront, here are some suggestions: • recruit your friends • do a work trade with your fellow business owners • hire the enthusiastic youth at EyeOpeners

easy steps

1. sweep the sidewalk When customers see trash on the sidewalk, they are more likely to add to the problem.

windows and 2. clean awnings A razor blade and WD40 makes window cleaning quick and easy.

walls and 3. paint window frames Exterior latex paint dries fast on walls and Rustoleum brand, oil-based paint is best on metal surfaces.

clutter on and 4. reduce around windows This step very important in attracting new customers. The more open window space, the more of your products can be viewed from the sidewalk.


Throughout the day, we received a lot of interest from shoppers. They were interested to learn about the project and were excited to see people volunteering their time to a cause that impacted the community. Many times, we heard people say that they would like to have help reviving their store. Other times, people asked if we were offering jobs!

“Keep up the good work!” “I love to see people donating their time. I think it helps motivate others to make improvements!” “Cleaning up storefronts is very valuable, not just to the businesses, but to the whole Port Richmond neighborhood.”

For more information, please contact Michele Sledge Northfield Community LDC Northfield Community LDC 160 Heberton Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10302 (718) 442-7351 ext. 225

¡Revive! Port Richmond  

Neighborhood Revitalization Project, SVA, Design for Social Change program.

¡Revive! Port Richmond  

Neighborhood Revitalization Project, SVA, Design for Social Change program.