Windshield Survey Example
City: Albuquerque, NM
Neighborhood: Victory Hills
Date/Time: 02/22/15 at 17:00
1. Neighborhood boundaries: Located in southeast Albuquerque, Victory Hills is a neighborhood bordered by Gibson Boulevard Southeast, Yale Boulevard Southeast, Garfield Avenue Southeast, and Carlisle Boulevard Southeast Windshield Survey Example.
- Commercial streets: The southern and western boundaries, Gibson Blvd. SE and Yale Blvd. SE respectively, are commercial streets. Gibson Blvd. SE is one of Albuquerque’s southern-most commercial streets that leads from I-25 to major industries like Kirtland Air Force Base (AFB), Sandia National Labs, and the VA Hospital. Also, Gibson Blvd. SE is adjacent to Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ Sunport), the largest airport in New Mexico. There are many hotels, chain restaurants, and gas stations that cater to travelers and the business lunch crowd Windshield Survey Example. Yale Blvd. SE runs from ABQ Sunportto the University of New Mexico (UNM). It passes through a combination of residential and commercial properties. This road is flanked with a variety of businesses including gas stations, grocery stores, local restaurants, tattoo shops, a cemetery, and even a plasma donation center.
- Modes of transportation: This area is bus, car, bike, and pedestrian friendly. When I was surveying the northwestern quadrant of the neighborhood, I observed 12 pedestrians, five cyclists, and multiple passing cars within a one-hour time period. According to Find The Home (2016), when compared to other Albuquerque neighborhoods, more residents of Victory Hills use alternative transportation to commute Windshield Survey Example.
All four boundary streets and two of the larger streets that transect the neighborhood, Kathryn Ave. SE and Girard Blvd. SE, are designated bus routes with seated bus stops. Many of the streets have marked bike lanes; Columbia Dr. SE and Kathryn Ave. SE are designated bike routes. All streets have sidewalks and moderate pedestrian traffic. The sidewalks are narrow and in various stages of disrepair. It is common to see pedestrians opting to walk in the street to avoid trip hazards.
Additional available transportation services include taxi cabs and Uber drivers. Given the proximity to the airport, Uber drivers and taxi cabs are readily available.
- Describe the condition and appearance of housing in the area: Many of the homes were built in the 1950s, but some of the newer homes were built in the early 1990s. Windshield Survey Example The lower income areas near the southern boundary of Victory Hills show more signs of disrepair including: chipped stucco, broken fences, plant and weed overgrowth, and weathered windows and siding. Also, homes in this area more commonly had security bars on windows and doors.
The homes north of Kathryn Ave. SE show noticeable improvement in terms of appearance, maintenance, and overall condition. The majority of yards are well trimmed and landscaped. The nicest homes were in the northeastern quadrant close to the Ridgecrest neighborhood.
- Types of homes: There is a combination of single and multifamily dwellings throughout the neighborhood. There were no mobile homes observed. The majority are single family homes. However, there is a large block of government assisted, multifamily dwellings located south of Fairview Memorial Park and east of Yale Blvd. SE. There are also many multifamily dwellings in the southeastern corner of the neighborhood near Puerto Del Sol Golf Course Windshield Survey Example.
- Spaces/lawns and parked vehicles:The majority of homes have space and lawns around them. The homes in the southern region are less maintained and have more debris and trash. Especially in the southeastern corner many of the yards and streets are littered with broken, dirty furniture and trash. There is a noticeable improvement with the homes in the northern region. These homes have well-groomed yards and a greater amount of space between residences. All neighborhoods have 1-2 cars parked in the driveway and along the streets.
- Vacant houses, boarded up or dilapidated buildings?: The majority of the homes appeared to be occupied. A few houses were under active renovation. No dilapidated or boarded up buildings were observed. Windshield Survey Example.
- Houses for sale: There were multiple homes for sale. When I conducted the survey I noted 23 homes with For Sale signs.
- Streetlights, sidewalks, gutters, curbs, open drainage ditches?: The major streets have streetlights, but the smaller side streets do not. All streets have sidewalks, curbs, and gutters. The gutters are mostly clear with some leaves and small twigs. However, some of the sidewalks and curbs are in disrepair due to tree root growth.
- Parks and recreational areas: There are two parks located in the northeast corner of the survey area: Burton Park and HyderPark. Burton Park has playground equipment and is well groomed. It appears to be designed for the younger population, but it was vacant at the time of survey. Hyder Park is well groomed with ample grass and tree coverage. It does not have a playground but does have picnic accommodations including benches and trashcans. Upon observation, this park is frequently populated with dogs and their owners. Neither parks have lighting Windshield Survey Example.
There is one park in the southwest corner of the survey area called the Loma Linda Park (Korean War Veteran’s Park). This is a well-maintained, kid-friendly park with a playground and playing field. This park is open dawn-to-dusk but does not have lights.
In the northwest corner of the survey area is Fairview Memorial Park. This is a cemetery. The western border of the park is well maintained, but it tappers off towards the eastern border. There is a chain-link fence that encircles the property. The fence tends to trap deflated balloons and plastic flowers left behind by visitors and carried away by the wind. In addition, this park is a common place for homeless people to sleep Windshield Survey Example.
Near the center of the survey area is Puerto Del Sol Golf Course. This is a 9-hole course that is surrounded by a chain-link fence and is very well maintained.
- Trash, rubble, or abandoned cars?: This neighborhood is a fairly densely populated area with limited unoccupied space. With the exception of Fairview Memorial Park, the open spaces are well-maintained with limited trash and debris Windshield Survey Example. No abandoned cars were observed. The fence surrounding Fairview Memorial Park is littered with broken alcohol bottles, cigarette butts, and a variety of food trash.
- Types of stores: This survey area does not contain many stores. On Yale Blvd. SE there are two convenience stores/gas stations. There is a small bodega on the corner of Garfield Ave. SE and Stanford Dr. SE. Also, there is a small shopping center on the corner of Gibson Blvd. SE and CarlisleBlvd. SE that contains a Laundromat, pawn shop, barber shop, and small clothing store.
- Tobacco or alcohol advertisements: There are two convenience stores/gas stations on Yale Blvd. SE that advertise for, and sell, alcohol and cigarettes. Windshield Survey Example While driving east on Gibson Blvd SE, there is billboard advertisement for Budweiser (beer), McDonald’s (fast food chain), and an upcoming gun show at the State Fair Grounds.
- Neighborhood schools: BandelierElementary School is a public school located in the northeast corner of the survey area. The school has posted school zone signs and designated crosswalks with crossing guards. The school grounds are very well maintained and there is a large, open field for recreational activities.
Mission Achievement and Success Charter School is located in the southwest corner of the survey area. This public, charter school is for teens in middle and high school. This school does not have an outdoor recreational space, but is located adjacent to Loma Linda Park. The grounds are well maintained, but there are not designated crosswalks or crossing guards.
- Evidence for religious practices: The Zen Center of Albuquerque is located at 2300 Garfield Ave. SE. This is a religious center that provides guidance and practice of Zen Buddhism and meditation. The center is open to the public, and is available for those who seek quiet space. The Garfield Gospel Chapel is located at 2406 Garfield Ave. SE. This is a Christian fellowship evangelical church. The church operates purely for religious purposes. The Islamic Center of New Mexico is located at 1100 Yale Blvd. SE. It provides religious, social, and educational services to Muslims in Albuquerque and surrounding communities.
- Hospitals, health services, and alternative medical centers: There are no hospitals located within a one-mile radius of the focal point of the surveyed area. The nearest hospital with emergency services is the University of New Mexico Hospital (UNMH), located two miles north. No senior centers or child care facilities were found. Windshield Survey Example.
There are two alternative medicine centers located within the survey boundaries. In the northwest quadrant at 2504 Garfield Ave. SE there are offices for acupuncture, therapeutic massage, and home health services. In the southeast quadrant there is a Health and Community Wabi-Sabi Oasis called The Source that is complete with a chiropractor, psychologists, and life-coaching services.
In terms of social services, there is an organization called Parents Reaching Out located at 1920 Columbia Dr. SE. It is a non-profit organization that works with parents, caregivers, educators, and other professionals to promote healthy, positive and caring experiences for families and children. Also, the New Mexico Workers Compensation Administration office is located within the neighborhood at 2410 Centre Ave. SE.
- The most striking thing:
The diversity that existed within a one-mile block was one of the most striking things I discovered about this community. Economic diversity was obvious through visual observation of housing conditions. For economic separation, Burton Park was an interesting landmark. The north border of the park is a $1.5 million mansion, and the south border marks the beginning of low-income multifamily dwellings whose surroundings are littered with old furniture, rusted gates, and broken windows.
I was also surprised to discover the community centers and programs that existed in the low-income neighborhoods. I had never heard of Parents Reaching Out or The Source, both programs seem to be working well to promote community health. Another great discovery was the existence of a community garden Windshield Survey Example. A community garden is a great way to foster community solidarity, healthy exercise, and education.
- The community’s strengths:
Community-centered health promotion is an important strength of the Victory Hills neighborhood. Non-profit organizations, alternative medical facilities, religious communities, and other community enrichment programs serve as leaders in an appeal for community health. A few examples of these community programs include Parents Reaching Out, The Source, and the Islamic Center of New Mexico. Parents Reaching Out is a non-profit organization that works with parents, caregivers, educators, and other professionals to promote healthy, positive and caring experiences for families and children. Windshield Survey Example The Source is a diverse bodywork and wellness center, and community gathering space that hosts classes, art shows, performances, and celebrations. The Islamic Center of New Mexico provides religious, social, and educational services to Muslims in Albuquerque and surrounding communities. These organizations provide leadership in the community to promote the health and well being of individuals within the community (Giddens, 2013).
Another way the Victory Hills neighborhood promotes the health of its community members is through open spaces. Physical and nutrition fitness activities are an important aspect of primary preventative care (Potter, Perry, Stockert, & Hall, 2013). Victory Hills includes three public parks, a public pool, a public golf course, and even a community garden. Recreational spaces and parks provide an opportunity for physical activity, as physical activity is critical for optimal physical and psychological health (Giddens, 2013).
- The community’s biggest challenges:
Nutrition and safety are two of the biggest challenges for this community. Low socioeconomic status, a lack of access to full-service grocery stores, and the high cost of healthy food are environmental factors that hinder the nutritional health of this community (Potter et al., 2013). Convenience stores and chain restaurants are the only food sources in this community, and this creates an increased risk for malnutrition (Giddens, 2013). Windshield Survey Example The commercial streets in this neighborhood are littered with junk food wrappers, broken bottles, and alcohol and cigarette advertisements. There is a Smith’s grocery store just outside of the northwest boundary of the neighborhood; however, their produce cost is high and transportation is difficult given that many of the community members rely on alternative modes of transportation. Nutrition is a major deficit for a large portion of this community Windshield Survey Example.
Safety is another great concern in this community. Especially in the southern region of Victory Hills, most homes have barred windows and doors, home security signs, fenced barking dogs, and neighborhood watch group notices. Fear and violence disrupt community solidarity and poses a great challenge to the community (Potter et al., 2013) Windshield Survey Example.
- Health care problems or needs:
Low socioeconomic status is one of Victory Hills’ greatest risk factors for impaired community health. According to Find The Home (2016) 47% of Victory Hills residents are below the poverty line (less than $25,000), and 19% are considered lower middle class ($25,000-$50,000). Socioeconomic factors are strong external variables that influence a person’s health beliefs and practices (Potter et al., 2013). Windshield Survey Example Low economic status may affect an ill patient’s compliance if the patient cannot allocate the appropriate funds for medication and treatment.
Low income populations are at an increased risk for malnutrition, injury, and homelessness (Potter et al., 2013). Homelessness is a priority concern in this vulnerable population. Alleyways, parks, and cemeteries are common locations in this community where homeless individuals find temporary shelter. The homeless have fewer resources than the poor and often face chronic health problems (Potter et al., 2013). Chronic health issues are exacerbated by alcohol and drug abuse. The fence surrounding Fairview Memorial Park is littered with broken alcohol bottles, cigarette butts, and a variety of food trash. The transient, homeless population is a great challenge for the health of this community Windshield Survey Example.
Find The Home. (2016). Victory Hills Demographics. Retrieved from http://places.findthehome.com/l/165413/Victory-Hills-Albuquerque-NM
Giddens, J. F. (2013) Concepts for Nursing Practice. St. Louis, MO: Elsevier.
Potter, P. A., Perry, A. G., Stockert, P. A., & Hall, A. M. (2013) Fundamentals of nursing (8th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier. Windshield Survey Example.