PHILADELPHIA (May 31, 2022) – Today, Mayor Kenney joined Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson (2nd District), community members, and City officials to celebrate the groundbreaking of the Rebuild project at Chew Playground in the Point Breeze section of Philadelphia.

A part of the City of Philadelphia’s Rebuild initiative, a historic investment in public spaces, this project will revitalize an important public space at the corner of 18th Street and Washington Avenue serving neighbors and residents throughout this area of South Philadelphia.

Totaling $2 million in investment, the Chew Playground community can expect:

  • Installation of new athletic equipment for soccer, football, and baseball with appropriate field markings

  • New player and spectator seating around the football field

  • Upgraded fencing around the fields

  • Improved drainage systems

  • Replacement and installation of clean soil throughout the site

  • Updated lighting fixtures

“Rebuild partners with communities to update public spaces and facilities they can enjoy and take pride in,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “I’m excited for construction to start here at Chew Playground and to return to cut the ribbon when the project completes.”

“Chew Playground has been operating in South Philadelphia for more than 50 years and serving residents of all ages, “ Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson continued.  “The groundbreaking for this new era for Chew Playground will mean an investment of $2 million from the Rebuild Initiative that make much-needed improvements to the facilities at Chew. When the new Chew Playground reopens to the public by the end of 2022, it will be one of the best playgrounds in the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Department system.”

“The Chew community has long deserved improvements to this park,” said Kira Strong, Executive Director for Rebuild. “We’re excited to commence work on this project and wrap up construction as soon as possible so residents can enjoy their updated public space.”

Construction for the project is underway and is anticipated to last five months.

“Recreation centers and playing fields are vital lifelines, for our youth and families,” said Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell. “The Hurricanes, the Sigma Sharks, and so many others rely on the multisport athletic field here at Chew to run their leagues and give kids a safe place to play. The investment Rebuild is making in this field will be a game-changer for Point Breeze families and the coaches and community who support them.”

In the month of June alone, Rebuild will break ground or cut ribbons on $30 million worth of projects.

REBUILD is a historic investment of hundreds of millions of dollars in neighborhood parks, recreation centers, and libraries across Philadelphia. Proposed in Mayor Jim Kenney’s first budget as a part of his vision for a more equitable Philadelphia, Rebuild’s promise to acknowledge history, engage the community and invest intentionally seeks to uplift pivotal community spaces, empower neighborhoods, and promote economic opportunity through diversity and inclusion.

Philadelphia Parks & Recreation (PPR) advances the prosperity of the city and the progress of its people through stewardship of nearly 10,200 acres of public land and waterways, and management of 500 recreation buildings, 166 miles of trail, and 250 playgrounds. PPR offers safe, enjoyable recreation, environmental and cultural programs and events throughout Philadelphia’s parks and recreation system. PPR promotes the well-being and growth of the city’s residents by connecting them to the natural world, to each other and to fun, physical and social opportunities. In 2017, Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell, set about implementing the park system’s first strategic plan: Our Path to 2020 and Beyond. As a result, PPR is undertaking a period of historic change, setting the department on a course to become a modern, equitable and exceptional parks and recreation system. Visit us at, and follow @philaparkandrec on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.