The goal of SEHTA is to achieve positive transformation of Southeast Houston through community-based creative placemaking- empowering residents to bring values and community history to effect change through well-designed improvements to the physical environment enhanced by artistic and cultural expression projects.
The Southeast Houston Transformation Alliance (SEHTA) is a collaborative effort that brings together residents and key stakeholders to transform Southeast Houston area into a healthy, vibrant, and economically stable community.
In November 2011, University of Houston Research Professor Carroll Parrott Blue received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Our Town Initiative. Three guiding principles emerged from the community’s input and participation in Our Town’s activities, plans, historic research and arts as supported by this grant:
- Personal and environmental health, wellness, and nutrition
- Urban connectivity
- Community empowerment and organization
In order to address the concerns raised from the results from Our Town’s initial work, SEHTA was formed in October 2012 and received its 501(c)(3) non-profit status in March 2013.
In January 2013, OST/South Union was designated a GO Neighborhood by Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC). SEHTA serves as the Steering Committee in conjunction with Neighborhood Recovery Community Development Corporation (NRCDC) as the Convening Agency. GO Neighborhoods is a multi-year comprehensive initiative for revitalizing Houston communities by addressing the many aspects of developing a sustainable community – a good place to work, live, and raise a family. Additional technical assistance came in January 2013 from Blue’s National Park Service’s Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program award.
GO Teams are the backbone of the GO Neighborhood process. Led by community residents and stakeholders, GO Teams support each aspect of the GO Neighborhood’s mission through weekly and monthly meetings, community activities and events, and major community projects.
GO Team: Arts, Culture and History
Our Vision: Culture connects us, history is our foundation, and art celebrates both our past and our future. We envision a vibrant community that celebrates its history and culture through the arts.
GO Team: Education and Youth
Our Vision: Together we will care for our youth and support them and their parents in education and life. We believe it takes a village to raise a child; we want to work together to enhance opportunities for all of our young people. We will work with our teachers, students, and parents to make education a priority, to enhance access to learning technologies, and provide productive and creative opportunities for our youth outside of the classroom.
GO Team: Economic Development
Our Vision: We will support our local businesses and work together to make our neighborhood attractive for new businesses that will provide the amenities we need and jobs for our residents. We will work together to address issues that might create a negative perception of our community, including addressing vacant and abandoned property in our neighborhood and criminal activity as a means to encourage economic development that will provide us with amenities and jobs.
GO Team: Family Income and Wealth
Our Vision: We will have the knowledge and resources to make smart choices that will build our families’ income and wealth. Employment opportunities, education, financial and legal advice will lead to better decision-making and improve our economic outlook.
GO Team: Health and Wellness
Our Vision: Our community is healthy, connected to the city, pedestrian friendly and walkable. We have easy access to fresh and nutritional food, preventative healthcare, recreational space, and our commitment to health and wellness will create economic opportunity. Check out the website of the Palm Center Farmers Market!
GO Team: Housing
Our Vision: Neighborhoods are the heart of our community. We will work together to ensure the continued value of our investment and work to provide opportunities for new residents. Our neighborhoods will be strengthened by supporting our homeowners and civic clubs, by developing new affordable housing, by protecting and stabilizing existing neighborhoods, and improving our properties.
GO Team: Infrastructure
Our Vision: Our community will be well informed about city services and resources and we will work together to improve our infrastructure and public services, including advocating for infrastructure improvements, the demolition of hazardous structures, and preventing littering and dumping in our community.
GO Team: Leadership and Civic Engagement
Our Vision: Connecting People. Cultivating Lives. Activating Abilities.
GO Team: Safety and Clean-Ups
Our Vision: Together we will restore our community to its former glory and create a safer community.
GO Team: Strollin’ and Rollin’
Our Vision: Southeast Houston will continue to develop into a more active community that is supported by a network of pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure, with increased accessibility achieved through multiple transportation options. Residents and visitors will be linked to area destinations, such as neighborhood parks, local establishments, historic sites and art installations, with designated routes that connect to the Brays Bayou Trails, Houston Bayou Greenways and other existing trails and pathways. These facilities, supported by a vibrant biking and walking culture, will yield social, economic and environmental benefits that improve the community’s quality of life. View the Strollin’ and Rollin’ team website.