Pittsfield Aims to Make Lower-Income Neighborhoods Greener

PITTSFIELD — Two city neighborhoods will be going from “Grey to Green” as part of a project to engage the community and prioritize green planning in a social and racial justice context. Studies have shown that low-income neighborhoods are more concrete or “gray” than higher-income neighborhoods, which can have a deleterious effect on the health of residents, Senior Planner Allison Egan told the Berkshire Regional Planning Commission on Thursday. Having more green space in a neighborhood can contribute to longevity and encourages healthy outdoor recreation, she said. “Pittsfield Grey to Green” will take place in the Morningside and West Side areas. Funding for this project is through the Massachusetts Determination of Needs Fund, a pool of funding the state uses for public health and community-based causes. “Grey to Green” is funded for five years and is estimated to cost about $185,000 a year. The project’s primary partners are Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity, 18 Degrees Family Services, and the city of Pittsfield. The team is also working with community partners in the Morningside and West Side neighborhoods. Read more on the iBerkshires site HERE.