(WKBW release) West Side children now have a new, fun, and safe place to play in Buffalo.
Friday, Mayor Byron W. Brown, community leaders, and West Side parents and their children marked the completion of Phase One of the Massachusetts Avenue Park Renovation Project with a ribbon cutting ceremony.
According to a news release:
The city invested $119,000 in city bond funds to make this improvement project possible.
“Healthy parks and playgrounds make neighborhoods stronger,” said Mayor Brown. “This is an investment in our children that will also expand green space, and improve the quality of life for the residents that live around this formerly vacant lot.”
PUSH Buffalo worked closely with the City to rehab Massachusetts Avenue Park. The park now features a new entranceway, new benches and greenery, and a newly relocated and improved playground. A broken handball court and basketball court were also demolished.
“This new park answers a need in our neighborhood,” said PUSH Buffalo Board Chair, Maxine Murphy. “Our children needed a safe place to play and exercise. We worked closely with the city on a plan, and it’s great to see it become a reality.”
The relocation of the playground is significant. It was located in front of the neighboring Boys & Girls Club, and situated too close to the street. It was relocated into the park proper, offering children a safe place to play.
Today, Mayor Brown also announced the start of Phase Two Improvements. This $350,000 improvement project will continue to build off of Phase One enhancements, and include a unique picnic shelter, park pathway, and a multipurpose athletic field. Construction is scheduled to begin in the fall.
Attention to parks is one of Mayor Brown’s top priorities. In 2011, the city spent almost $7 million to improve parks, including $1.6 million in improvements at 35 playgrounds. It was the largest investment in parks in 20 years. Another $11 million worth of park projects is planned for the next two years. With the successful transfer of city parks to Buffalo from Erie County, his administration will have invested nearly $30 million to improve and beautify Buffalo’s park system by the end of next year.
“I believe that every child deserves a safe place to play,” said Mayor Brown. “This site was left vacant for too long, and I am glad that we worked closely with neighborhood residents, and PUSH Buffalo to come up with a plan that will enhance the quality of life for residents.”