The judges have ruled, and the 23rd annual Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest winner is Bed Stuy’s Stuyvesant Avenue between Bainbridge and Chauncey streets. The Brooklyn Botanic Garden has been hosting the flower-filled competition for the last two decades in an attempt to bring communities together to make Brooklyn a cleaner, greener place.
Residents were out in force for the ceremony on Monday morning, celebrating their green award. The block won a 2106 award for tree pit plantings and this year decided to go big, filling front gardens, planters and tree pits with botanical displays.
To make it possible, “everyone chipped in together,” said one block resident. “We became a closer community.”
Members of the Stuyvesant Avenue Block Association Block noted with pride the importance of their block to the surrounding community. “This block is a main thoroughfare through the neighborhood and we we have a responsibility to make it a gateway for Stuyvesant Heights,” said resident Jason Harrell. “It affects people’s day.”
Some residents also saw it as an example of what a community can accomplish. “It’s a testament to diversity when people from different cultures come together for good,” Denise Harrell told Brownstoner.
This year, more than 150 blocks across the borough entered the contest and the judges numbered more than 20. “Together they clocked almost half a million steps for this competition,” according to Mark Fisher, Director of Horticulture at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. As well as general greenery, the judges took into account everything from tree care to sustainability.
At the ceremony Monday morning, neighbors mingled and celebrated, and speakers made brief remarks recognizing the hard work of all the award winners. Speakers included Brooklyn Botanic Garden President Scott Medbury and Director of Horiculture Mark Fisher; Sandra Champman, Chief Program Officer for the Office of Borough President Eric Adams; and Keith Rooney, director of community and customer management for National Grid, a sponsor of the awards.
According to Medbury, “the competition was fierce but friendly.”
Last year’s contest winner was in Flatbush — the East 25th Street block between Clarendon Road and Avenue D.
The residential runners-up this year were Lefferts Avenue between Bedford and Rogers avenues in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, which took second place, and Lincoln Road between Bedford and Rogers avenues, also in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, which came in third.
Bed Stuy blocks captured the top two slots in the Best Street Tree Beds category — first went to Macon Street between Ralph and Howard avenues and second prize was awarded to Lefferts Place between Franklin and Classon avenues. Third prize went to Vanderveer Place between Flatbush Avenue and East 23rd Street in Flatbush.
This year’s Greenest Commercial Street winner was Atlantic Avenue between Bond and Nevin streets in Boerum Hill, with second place going to Fulton Street between St. James Place and Grand Avenue in Clinton Hill.
Check out the full list of winners in all categories here.
[Photos by Susan De Vries]
- Bed Stuy Community Comes Together to Win Greenest Block in Brooklyn Contest
- Flatbush Block Wins Gold at This Year’s Greenest Block in Brooklyn Contest
- Brooklyn’s Greenest Blocks From 1995 to Today