On March 15, Fairmount Park Conservancy was honored to join the Pennsylvania Department of Natural Resources (DCNR), elected officials, and community members to celebrate a $500,000 grant for environmental and infrastructure improvements to FDR Park.
The generous grant from PA DCNR will go toward the future Welcome Center at FDR. Specifically, the award will support an accessible public plaza, trees, additional lighting and family-friendly furnishings. An acre of native riparian plants will also be installed to help enhance wildlife habitat and protect the water quality of Pattison Lagoon. The improvements are an implementation of the FDR Park Plan, which was developed with extensive community input.
Tom Ford, Director of the Bureau of Recreation and Conservation, joined by Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell, Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson, Representative Regina Young, Karen Harris of Friends of FDR Park, Fairmount Park Conservancy Executive Director Maura McCarthy, and Jean Lynch, Regional Advisor of PA DCNR.
“The FDR Park Plan will have a profound impact on a wide range of users, aligning community priorities with the realities of a changing climate and finding the balance of activity, nature, and water,” said Maura McCarthy, Ph.D., Executive Director, Fairmount Park Conservancy. “Fairmount Park Conservancy is grateful to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and our elected officials for recognizing the significance their investment can have in our city.”
Conservation work has started at the historic guardhouse and stables, which will be transformed into the park’s first-ever Welcome Center. Construction work will begin in earnest this spring, with an expected completion in fall 2023.
To learn more about the Community Conservation Partnerships Program grant, read DCNR’s full press release.