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Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Alderman Mary O’Connor, Alderman Joe Moore, Chicago Park District General Superintendent Michael P. Kelly and community members today announced that, as part of Mayor Emanuel’s Chicago Plays! program, 77 playgrounds will be refurbished or built in parks across the City this year. In addition, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) will build 26 playgrounds at schools that have space for a playground but don’t currently have one and will replace one existing school playground.
“Not only are we undertaking one of the most aggressive playground rehabilitation programs in the country, we’re ahead of schedule and are on track to hit our five year goal of 300 refurbished playgrounds through Chicago Plays! one year ahead of schedule,” said Mayor Emanuel. “Playgrounds provide children a place to play, parents to bond and neighbors to come together; from building new playgrounds to adding hundreds of acres of new park space, we are investing to create a quality of life for children and families that is unmatched.”
The Chicago Plays! playground renovation program was launched in the Spring of 2013 by Mayor Emanuel, who announced that over the next five years, the Chicago Park District will rebuild, repair and/or refurbish 300 playgrounds in communities across Chicago. In 2014, 103 playgrounds were refurbished, and in 2013, 61 playgrounds were rehabilitated through the program.
“Playgrounds not only enhance the physical and cognitive development of our children, but play a significant role in bringing neighbors and communities together,” said Michael Kelly, Chicago Park District General Superintendent and CEO. “That is why this program is so important, and the Chicago Park District is excited to make these investments for today’s children, and future generations.”
In order to prioritize equipment replacement, the Chicago Park District worked with Friends of the Park to seek community input to determine which playgrounds were in greatest need of repair.
"Today's announcement represents another significant investment in our 41st Ward parks,” said Alderman O’Connor. “Play lots that were once hazardous and outdated have been replaced with brand new equipment so that the next generation of young people can enjoy some healthy recreation in a safe environment. I want to thank Mayor Emanuel, the Chicago Park District, Friends of the Parks, and our community groups who have helped beautify and rebuild our public spaces."
"Investing in our parks and schools across our whole City and in every neighborhood is exactly what every community needs," said Alderman Joe Moore. "I am extremely pleased to partner with the Mayor, the Chicago Park District, and my colleagues in the City Council to deliver the next round of new playgrounds."
Chicago Plays! invests approximately $125,000 in new playground equipment at each park location for a total program cost of $37,500,000, providing a broad investment in capital projects throughout the City.
Additionally, CPS will build playgrounds at the 26 schools that have space for but do not have a playground. Currently, 397 CPS schools have at least one dedicated playground, but 47 elementary and middle schools in CPS owned or leased buildings don’t have at least one playground. Of these 47, nine don’t have enough space for a playground and 12 are 300 feet or less away from a park playground. The remaining 26 schools have space for a playground and are not close to a park playground; in addition, the playground at Solomon will be replaced with a new playground.
The total cost of the CPS playgrounds is $8 million, funded through CPS Capital Funds.
In 2015, the Park District is planning on refurbishing or building playgrounds at the following parks:
Andersonville Park, 5233 N Ashland Ave.
Ashmore Park, 4807 W Gunnison St.
Beilfuss (A.W.) Park, 1725 N Springfield Ave.
Bell Park, 3020 N. Oak Park Ave.
Blackhawk, 2318 N. Lavergne Ave.
Bogan (William) Park, 3939 W. 79th St.
Buckthorn Park, 4347 S. Calumet Ave.
Burnham (Daniel) (Shore Playlot), 5400 S. Lake Shore Dr.
Calumet Park,9801 S. Avenue G
Catalpa Park, 4330 S. Kedvale Ave.
Columbus (Christopher) Park, 5793 W. Adams Blvd.
DeBow Park, 1126 E 80th St.
Dixon (Lorraine) Park, 8701 S. Dauphin Ave.
Dobson Park, 7521 S. Dobson Ave.
Douglas (Stephen) Park, 1470 S. Albany Ave.
Douglas (Stephen) Park, 1400 S. California Ave.
Dvorak (Anton) Park, 1119 W. Cullerton St.
Edison Park, 6755 N. Northwest Hwy.
Elston (Daniel) Park, 3461 N. Troy St.
Emmerson Park, 1820 W. Granville Ave.
Foster Park, 1400 W. 84th St.
Garibaldi (Giuseppi) Park, 1520 W. Polk St.
Grape Park, 2850 N. Avondale Ave.
Hale Park, 6140 S Melvina Ave.
Hartigan (David) Beach, 1040 W. Albion Ave.
Hasan Park, 6855 S. Oglesby Ave.
Houston Park, 5001 S. Cottage Grove Ave.
Howard (Ure) Beach, 1300 W. Howard St.
Humboldt (Baron Von) Park -Lagoon, 2800 W. LeMoyne Dr.
Independence Park, 3945 N. Springfield Ave.
Kensington Park, 345 E 118th St.
Keystone Park, 1655 N. Keystone Ave.
Korczak (Janusz) Park, 6156 N. Claremont Ave.
Langdon (Mary Margaret) Park, 1754 W. Albion Ave.
Le Claire Courts - Hearst Community Center, 5116 W. 44th St.
Legion Park, 3200 W. Hollywood Ave.
Legion-Thorndale Park, 3150 W. Thorndale Ave.
Leland Giants,7526 S. Lowe Ave.
Limas (Juliann Hope), 2410 S. Trumbull Ave.
Lincoln (Abraham) Park – Sheridan, 3920 N. Recreation Dr.
Lincoln (Abraham) Park, 929 W. Hollywood Ave.
Linden Park, 1139 N. Pulaski Rd.
Malus Park, 5426 S. Shields Ave.
Mann (James) Park, 3035 E. 130th St.
Maple Park, 2047 N. Spaulding Ave.
Mason Park, 4100 W. West End Ave.
Mozart Park, 2036 N. Avers Ave.
Mulberry Park, 3150 S. Robinson Ct.
Nelson (Andrew) Park, 2953 W. Nelson St.
Oakley Park, 6441 S. Oakley Ave.
Pasteur Park, 5825 S. Kostner Ave.
Periwinkle Park, 100 W. 66th St.
Pietrowski (Sylvester) Park, 9650 S. Avenue M
Pottawattomie Park, 7339 N. Rogers Ave.
Rainbow Beach Park, 2700 E. 75th St.
Rainey Park, 4350 W. 79th St.
Ravenswood Manor Park, 4626 N. Manor Ave.
Robichaux Park, 9247 S. Eggleston Ave.
Saint Louis Park, 347 N. St. Louis Ave.
Scottsdale Park, 4620 W. 83rd Pl.
Shedd (John G.) Park, 3660 W. 23rd St.
Sherman - Garfield Blvd Park, 5444 S. Sherman Park
Sherman – Racine Park, 1159 W. 54th St.
Sintic (Gregory) Park, 2835 S. Wallace St.
Spikings Farm Park, 4706 N. Pulaski Rd.
Spruce Park, 5337 S. Blackstone Ave.
Starr (Ellen Gates) Park, 2306 W. Maypole Ave.
Sun Yat-Sen Park, 300 W. 24th Pl.
Vittum (Harriet Elizabeth) Park, 5014 W. 50th St.
Vogle Park, 2100 W. Lawrence Ave.
Walnut Park, 3801 W. 45th St.
Washington - 60th Park, 550 E. 60th St.
Washington (Dinah) Park, 8215 S. Euclid Ave.
Welles (Gideon) Park, 2330 W. Montrose Ave.
West Lawn Park, 4233 W. 65th St.
White (Willye B.) Park, 7631 N. Ashland Ave.
Wolfe Park, 3325 E. 108th St.
In 2015, CPS is planning on building playgrounds at the following schools:
*Existing playground will be replaced
Brighton Park, 3825 S Washtenaw Ave.
Joplin, 7931 S Honore St
Cook, 8150 S Bishop St
King Elementary School, 644 W 71st St
Eberhart, 3400 W 65th Pl
Northwest, 5252 W Palmer St.
Davis, N 3014 W 39th Pl
Orozco, 1940 W 18th St
Wentworth, 1340 W 71st St
Jackson, A, 1340 W Harrison St
Sheridan, 533 W 27th St
Earle, 2040 W 62nd St
Randolph, 7316 S Hoyne Ave
Claremont, 2300 W 64th St
Lavizzo,138 W 109th St
Dubois, 330 E 133rd St
Heroes, 8344 S Commercial Ave
Finkl, 2332 S Western Ave
Montefiore, 1310 S Ashland Ave
Ashburn, 8300 S St Louis Ave
Fairfield, 6201 S Fairfield Ave
Mount Vernon, 10540 S Morgan St
Hernandez, 3510 W 55th St
Madero, 3202 W 28th St
Kipp Bloom Charter Campus, 5515 S Lowe Ave
*Solomon, 6206 N Hamlin Ave
This program compliments the major announcements the Mayor has previously made regarding parks, including a comprehensive plan to build and improve parks throughout the city so that every Chicagoan is within a ten minute walk of a park.
The Chicago Park District is the 2014 Gold Medal Award winner, recognized for excellence in park and recreation management across the nation. For more information about the Chicago Park District’s more than 8,300 acres of parkland, 585 parks, 26 miles of lakefront, 12 museums, two world-class conservatories, 16 historic lagoons, 10 bird and wildlife gardens, thousands of special events, sports and entertaining programs, please visit www.chicagoparkdistrict.com or contact the Chicago Park District at 312.742.PLAY or 312.747.2001 (TTY). Want to share your talent? Volunteer in the parks by calling, 312.742.PLAY.