MAYOR EMANUEL, CHICAGO PARK DISTRICT OPEN BURNSIDE PARK PLAYGROUND

One of 103 playgrounds to be rebuilt or refurbished throughout Chicago’s neighborhoods this year as part of Mayor Emanuel’s Chicago Plays! Initiative

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Chicago Park District General Superintendent Michael P. Kelly, Alderman Michelle Harris and members of the Burnside community today celebrated the opening of a new playground at Burnside Park. The playground is one of the 103 neighborhood playgrounds that will be built or refurbished this year across the City as part of Mayor Emanuel’s Chicago Plays! program.

“Chicago is only as strong as its neighborhoods. Park playgrounds provide safe places for kids to play and grow, but they also serve as neighborhood hubs that foster friendships and strengthen communities,” said Mayor Emanuel. “Through this program, we’re rebuilding Chicago so that every child in every neighborhood is within a 10 minute walk of a park or playground.”

The Chicago Plays! playground renovation program was launched last spring by Mayor Emanuel, who announced that Chicago Park District would rebuild, repair and/or refurbish 325 playgrounds in communities across Chicago. Last year, 50 playgrounds were rehabilitated under the program.

“The new playground at Burnside Park gives children and families in the community a safe place to have fun and be active,” said Kelly. “We are exciting to continue improving the quality of life in Chicago through this initiative.”

The program invests approximately $125,000 in new playground equipment at each park location for a total program cost of $37,500,000, providing a broad investment in capital projects throughout the City. The Park District partnered with Friends of the Park to seek community input to prioritize locations.

Mayor Emanuel’s Chicago Plays! program underscores the major announcements the Mayor has previously made regarding parks, including a comprehensive plan to build and improve parks throughout the city.

Burnside Park is also one of many of the Chicago Park District’s Night Out in the Parks sites this summer. Upcoming events include EcoArt Studio, a space to create art projects with natural materials, on July 22 and a Movie in the Park featuring 42 on August 27.

The Night Out in the Parks series brings 1,000 events and programs to more than 250 neighborhood parks throughout the City. The Chicago Park District has partnered with more than 50 artists and community organizations to expand and produce this successful initiative.

For more information about the Chicago Park District’s more than 8,100 acres of parkland, more than 580 parks, 26 miles of lakefront, nine museums, two world-class conservatories, 16 historic lagoons, nearly 50 nature areas, thousands of special events, sports and entertaining programs, please visitwww.chicagoparkdistrict.com or contact the Chicago Park District at 312.742.PLAY or312.747.2001 (TTY). Want to share your talent? Volunteer in the parks by calling, 312.742.PLAY.