PITTSBURGH, PA (May 8, 2018) A new, 3.25 acre park called Liberty Green is set to be constructed in the Larimer/East Liberty Choice Neighborhoods development.
The board of the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh will consider an agreement this Thursday with the Richard King Mellon Foundation to provide $650,000 for the park at the corner of Larimer Avenue and Station Street in East Liberty.
Liberty Green Park would be adjacent to the recently completed phase 1 85-unit Larimer/East Liberty Choice Neighborhoods mixed-income housing development, and the 150-unit phase 2 mixed income housing development underway.
"Building this park is directly in line with the city's goal – outlined in the OnePgh plan – to provide parks or playgrounds within a 10 minute walk of every home in Pittsburgh," Mayor William Peduto said. "I want to thank the Richard King Mellon Foundation for this generous gift to city residents, which will help build one of the greenest parks in the country."
The new neighborhood park will feature a community plaza, open lawn and picnic areas, and dynamic playground elements. Liberty Green Park will also feature significant green infrastructure with the capacity to manage up to 4 million gallons of stormwater annually. The green infrastructure will culminate in a community driven art exhibit, River Roots, that showcases innovative solutions for stormwater management and is a visible and functional celebration of a decade of Larimer citizens working together for a sustainable future.
The City and the Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh received a $30 million grant in 2014 from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to implement the Larimer/East Liberty Choice Neighborhoods plan.
Choice Neighborhoods focuses on three core components: housing, people, and neighborhood. The URA is charged with implementing the neighborhood component, which seeks to address issues of vacant land, public infrastructure needs, and greening/park goals.
The URA led a robust public planning process in 2016 to develop a community wide vision for a proposed 25-acre park system in the Larimer and East Liberty neighborhoods, of which Liberty Green Park is the first phase. Outreach included 10 stakeholder and resident action team working sessions, three large neighborhood wide convenings, nine specialized workshops with youth and seniors, and a highly participatory park naming process.
The URA board is also set to vote Thursday to commit up to $1 million in local funds (including the foundation grant) to match a $1 million state RACP grant to pay for Liberty Green Park construction.
The URA expects to solicit bids for park construction next month.