SGCDC works to create, and maintains, parks, gardens, social venues, and green space in the community. The SGCDC (and its Board members) were instrumental in the founding of the North Street community garden, "The Spring Gardens" community garden, the revitalization of Roberto Clemente Playground, and, more recently, the development of Green Street Dog Park - - all venues where residents from all walks of life and diverse backgrounds can come together in activities of camaraderie and friendship, to share a common interest.
The SGCDC was granted permission to use City vacant property for "The Spring Gardens" community garden in 1995 and is in the process of formally leasing the land from the City to retain the property in perpetuity as a community garden.
The Garden, one whole square block of land between Wallace and North Streets, and 18th and 19th Streets, serves over 200 gardener families from throughout the community and provides a green attractive "social venue" for community residents. It was founded nearly 25 years ago to bring together our diverse community in an activity of camaraderie and beautification, and to serve as a green central landmark of unity. Many years ago, SGCDC secured funding for the iconic sculpture fence that surrounds the site. The Garden provides an oasis of beauty and greenery for the benefit of the entire community. In addition, the site is used for many public events and programs, including public classes in gardening, yoga and other subjects; food production to combat food insecurity in Spring Garden and Philadelphia; children’s programs; garden plots for local schools/school children; regular community social events; conservation activities; bee hives; a hosting area for community cleanups and tree plantings; and other events and programs.
The SGCDC (and gardeners) are also seeking to make numerous improvements to the Garden, to facilitate additional public activities, including more perimeter greenery to improve the aesthetics for the surrounding community and Garden users, a seating area for seniors, a pavilion for public events year round, better lighting, better water service, and other amenities.
The SGCDC also assists smaller community gardens and has provided the land for two such gardens.
In 2017, the SGCDC inaugurated an additional community social venue, Green Street Dog Park, at 1819-27 Green St., to encourage outdoor exercise and bring together individuals from all walks of life, ethnic backgrounds and income levels who share a love of dogs, including seniors and others who, for reasons of age, allergies, cost or other reason, cannot own a dog, but enjoy being with them. The project, created out of a parcel of weed-covered wasteland, significantly improved the block on which it is located, and the entire surrounding area, and has been a stunning success.
The SGCDC maintains the Playground facility and rec center and plants and maintains colorful spring flowering bulbs and annuals to brighten the facility for the many families and children who visit it. The site, formerly one of the least desirable playgrounds in the City, is now one of the best, and welcomes families from throughout the area, and even the suburbs and New Jersey.
The SGCDC, in partnership with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (“PHS”) and its TreeTenders program, plants new street trees twice a year; and it removes dead trees and stumps, and repairs sidewalks buckled by tree roots. It also plants and maintains Spring bulbs and annuals in the neighborhood.
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