Creative District Wilmington and Wilmington Renaissance Corporation (WRC) are very proud to announce the 7th & West community greenspace project!

The latest component of WRC’s Vacant to Vibrant initiative, the 7th & West project will reclaim and clean an empty and blighted space in the West Center City neighborhood. Through the process of remediation, construction and landscaping, the chosen lot will become a vibrant public greenspace.

With a projected completion date of 2020, the approximately 17,000 sq. ft. space, located at the corner of 7th and West Streets, will become a green oasis for the neighborhood. It will become the only considerable greenspace between Rodney Square and Helen Chambers Park.

Research has shown that community greenspaces offer respite, as well as positive activity for both residents and visitors. Renovation of the 7th & West lot will provide a mechanism by which the community can implement the events and activities that were so enthusiastically envisioned during the Vacant to Vibrant planning process.

The space will have three distinct sections. The first and main space at the center will be a multipurpose lawn area. Here you can enjoy some time outside, play a game, or meet your friends and family for a picnic.

The second section will feature a raised bed community vegetable garden. Access to the plots will be membership-based and allow families to grow their own produce.

The third section of the space will be an activity area for more low-intensity activities and programming. Think tables for chess and checkers or just sitting outside to enjoy a good book. 

First, the space will go through a rigorous remediation process. WRC has engaged Duffield Associates to test and evaluate the soil and other environmental conditions of the lot. The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) will monitor this process. After the evaluation, Duffield will manage the actual remediation process, which will dispose of and replace the contaminated soil, as well as make room for trees and utilities to be installed later.

WRC has opted for a sophisticated remediation process that will allow the space to be used safely by everyone, every day!

After remediation, two local firms have been contracted to design and build the new greenspace. Robinson Anderson Summers, of Wilmington, will be the landscape architects for the project, and Foresite Associates, of New Castle, will serve as the civil engineering firm.

In the end, we hope 7th & West will stand as an example of WRC’s commitment to the residents and neighborhoods of Wilmington. We see a bright future for Wilmington, and by working to provide new, public amenities to our city, we all can have a hand at shaping that future.

We also hope this project shows our belief and support of Mayor Michael Purzycki’s West Center Initiative, launched last year. We feel our effort at 7th & West complements his administration’s goal of stabilizing and improving this long-neglected neighborhood.

We already have evidence of the positive impact of community greenspaces.  Opened in August 2017, The Rock Lot is the first component of WRC’s Vacant to Vibrant initiative in the Creative District. It has become a platform for creative activities and programming for and by the neighborhood. We hope to foster the same spirit and mission at the 7th & West location, located just a block away.

We at WRC and Creative District Wilmington are very excited for this project and we hope you are too! Stay tuned to our social media, website and email newsletter for continued progress updates on the future park at 7th & West.

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