(WASHINGTON, DC) – Today, Mayor Vincent C. Gray, joined by Ward 7 Councilmember Yvette Alexander, Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) Interim Director Sharia Shanklin, Department of General Services (DGS) Director Brian Hanlon, other government officials and members of the Benning Park community, cut the ribbon at the Benning Park Community Center Playground. Benning Park marks the 20th play space to be completed under Mayor Gray’s Play DC Playground Improvement Initiative.
Mayor Gray also announced that eight additional play spaces have been added to the Play DC list for renovations.
“The Play DC initiative has transformed the District’s playgrounds into innovative, amazing places for residents across our city – and now we’re expanding it,” said Mayor Gray. “Improving every resident’s quality of life, and providing safe and inviting places for our children to play, are just two of the important tenets of my One City Action Plan. These renovations and upgrades are an investment in our children, our families, our community and our great city.”
Play DC is a city-wide, multi-year initiative and the largest playground renovation project in the District’s history. Initially, Mayor Gray included capital funding in the Fiscal Year 2013 budget to renovate eight playgrounds. Identification of funds to renovate more playgrounds eventually brought the original total to 32. With the eight additional playgrounds announced today, the total number of playgrounds that have been or will be renovated as part of Play DC rises to 40.
To date, the following 20 playgrounds have undergone renovations and are currently open:
- Ward 1 – Harrison, Banneker;
- Ward 2 – Volta Park;
- Ward 3 – Palisades, Macomb, Key Elementary School;
- Ward 4 – Raymond, Emery, Takoma, Hamilton, Fort Stevens, Upshur;
- Ward 5 – Noyes, Harry Thomas Sr., Brentwood;
- Ward 6 – Rosedale;
- Ward 7 – Neval Thomas Elementary School, Benning Park;
- Ward 8 – Fort Stanton, Fort Greble.
The following 12 playgrounds remain to be completed:
- Ward 2 – Rose Park;
- Ward 3 – Newark, Forest Hills;
- Ward 5 – Turkey Thicket;
- Ward 6 – Kennedy, Randall;
- Ward 7 – Hillcrest, Benning Stoddert;
- Ward 8 – Douglass, Congress Heights, Oxon Run, Barry Farm.
The additional eight playgrounds announced today are:
- Ward 1 – Columbia Heights;
- Ward 2 – Mitchell Park;
- Ward 3 – Guy Mason;
- Ward 4 – Lafayette;
- Ward 5 – Trinidad;
- Ward 6 – King Greenleaf;
- Ward 7 – Fort Davis;
- Ward 8 – Ferebee Hope.
DPR currently operates 92 of the District’s playgrounds.