Mayor Tom Barrett unveiled plans yesterday to create a new, super-green park on a vacant lot adjacent to the Fondy Farmers Market at 2200 W. Fond du Lac Ave. This won’t just be a new green space, but a “storm water park” that is sustainable and eco-friendly in a project overseen by the city’s Environmental Collaboration Office (ECO).
At a press conference, Barrett said that “Fondy Park,” as it will be called, will reinvent the block as well as create a gathering place for residents of the Lindsay Heights neighborhood and other nearby neighborhoods.
“We want to beautify this area and make it more sustainable,” Barrett said.
The project is funded by the City of Milwaukee, Fund for Lake Michigan foundation, and the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District.
The project falls under “HOME GR/OWN,” a public private partnership run by the ECO, which converts north side vacant lots into healthy green spaces to drive economic development and job creation and increase quality of life. Since HOME GR/OWN started in 2014, the group has created 30 new pocket parks, orchards, and community gardens from more than 50 vacant lots.
Tim McCollow, HOME GR/OWN’s program manager, notes his team has been working for more than six months on the Fondy Park project. Phase one of the multi-year development plan is scheduled for construction between April and August of this year, according to a city webpage on the project.
“The park you see depicted here is undergoing continued neighborhood outreach, final design and budget approval,” said McCollow. “We plan on breaking ground in May 2017.”