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Big Green Block celebrates latest innovative sustainability features


On July 20, folks from the New Kensington Community Development Corporation (NKCDC) will join the Philadelphia Water Department, the Department of Parks and Recreation, Mural Arts Program and the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society to celebrate a slew of new features now open on its "Big Green Block." Councilman Mark Squilla, State Representative Mike O’Brien and a representative from Councilwoman Maria D. Quiñones-Sánchez's office will also attend.

When Flying Kite last checked in with NKCDC and the others behind the "Big Green Block" initiative, they were prepping for a Volunteer Day to help complete some of the project's Phase Two features. With those now complete, the project's supporters are going to celebrate in style.

"We're having a celebration, ribbon-cutting and tours starting at 11 a.m.," explains Diana Jih with NKCDC. There will also be a resident-driven sustainability workshop on DIY rainbarrels.

Tours will showcase the site's new green features, including the newly opened Mural Arts Spray Park, basketball courts with an innovative stormwater drainage system and a grand re-opening of the Palmer Doggie Depot.

In addition, the Climate and Urban Systems Partnership (CUSP) will offer a presentation on the relationship between green infrastructure and climate change.

The "Big Green Block" initiative has been around for over two years; the area is defined by Front Street, Frankford Avenue, Palmer Street and Norris Street, and includes the Shissler Recreation Center (next door to the Kensington High School for Creative and Performing Arts). Within Sustainable 19125 -- an NKCDC initiative working to make the zipcode the greenest in the region -- the site has become a model location for green infrastructure and sustainable education.

Source:  Diana Jih, NKCDC
WriterGreg Meckstroth
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