Mayor, Councilman Squilla and Parks Commissioner Ott Lovell cut ribbon on new playground and announce coming investment from Rebuild
PHILADELPHIA – Mayor Jim Kenney and Councilman Mark Squilla today joined Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell to celebrate the ribbon cutting of a new playground at Capitolo Park and Playground in East Passyunk.
The Mayor was joined by Rebuild and the Managing Director’s Office to announce Capitolo as the latest recipient of Rebuild funding. The first stage of the Rebuild improvements at Capitolo will be the installation of critical security cameras. Rebuild is the City’s initiative to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in neighborhood parks, recreation centers, and libraries.
“Rebuild exists to give our community spaces the critical investments they have been denied for generations,” said Mayor Kenney. “Capitolo Park and Playground are part of the fabric of this community. Thanks to the Philadelphia Beverage Tax and the Rebuild program, residents will once again be able to enjoy the benefits of this wonderful community resource. I look forward to coming back here soon to enjoy the improvements that will be made to Capitolo.”
In 2017, the Capitolo Park Advisory Council met with Councilman Mark Squilla to request an updated playground to meet the needs of the growing number of neighborhood children. With funding from Councilman Squilla and design and construction carried out by Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, the Advisory Council today celebrated the completion of a brand new, $350,000 playground.
“This community is passionate about athletics and its children,” Councilman Mark Squilla said. “It has been a true honor to work alongside the park’s Advisory Council and neighborhood residents to build a new playground here, and begin planning for the additional improvements to come thanks to Rebuild. Capitolo is being transformed, and I couldn’t be prouder to be a part of this transformation.”
Following the installation of security cameras this week, Rebuild will begin the next phase of investment in Capitolo by meeting with the Advisory Council and residents to learn what improvements they want to see for this popular park and small recreation building. These could include improvements to the fields, basketball courts, or currently inoperable spray ground. Made possible by the Philadelphia Beverage Tax, Rebuild identified Capitolo as one of its initial 64 sites for improvement last year.
“Community parks like Capitolo connect residents to each other and their neighborhood,” said Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell. “But over the years, deferred maintenance and a lack of funding meant too few parks and recreation centers across Philadelphia received the level of investment our communities deserve. Today, with the support of Councilman Squilla and Rebuild, we are celebrating the first stage in a journey to revitalize Capitolo Park. It’s been a long time coming and is very well deserved.”
This spring Rebuild has begun work on 24 sites across the city, including major renovation projects at the Cecil B. Moore Recreation Center in North Philadelphia, the Heitzman Recreation Center in Harrowgate, the Vare Recreation Center in Grays Ferry, and the Glavin Playground in Port Richmond. Two-thirds of the 64 initial Rebuild sites are in high needs areas, and all Rebuild funding addresses critical facilities needs in neighborhood parks, recreation centers, and libraries.
“Rebuild is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to modernize and transform Philadelphia’s neighborhood parks, recreation centers, and libraries,” said Rebuild Executive Director Nicole Westerman. “The work we are doing here is designed to bring equity to community spaces across the city, grow Philadelphia businesses, and contribute to a more diverse and inclusive building trades workforce.”
To stay up to date on the Capitolo project and all Rebuild sites, visit www.rebuild.phila.gov.
Rebuilding Community Infrastructure (Rebuild)
Rebuild is an investment of hundreds of millions of dollars in neighborhood parks, recreation centers and libraries. Proposed in Mayor Jim Kenney’s first budget as a part of his vision for a more equitable Philadelphia, Rebuild seeks to improve pivotal community spaces, empower and engage communities, and promote economic opportunity through diversity and inclusion. Rebuild is a public private partnership made possible by the Philadelphia Beverage Tax.
Philadelphia Parks & Recreation
Philadelphia Parks & Recreation (PPR) advances the prosperity of the city and the progress of her people through intentional and sustained stewardship of nearly 10,200 acres of public land and waterways as well as through hundreds of safe, stimulating recreation, environmental and cultural centers. PPR promotes the well-being and growth of the city’s residents by connecting them to the natural world around them, to each other and to fun, physical and social opportunities. PPR is responsible for the upkeep of historically significant Philadelphia events and specialty venues, and works collaboratively with communities and organizations in leading capital projects and the introduction of inventive programming. To learn more about Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, visit us at www.phila.gov/parksandrec, and follow @philaparkandrec on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.