Location: Saint Paul, MN
Completion date: Summer, 2013
There is a fundamental shift taking place in our nation’s cities. Fueled by an amalgam of reasons – rapidly changing demographics, concentrations of poverty, lack of affordable and healthy food, disinvestment in entire neighborhoods – city governments have begun to reassess how to optimize their investment in public infrastructure to improve the lives of their citizens. This is evident in myriad ways, including transportation funding nationally and locally, grant and loan programs targeting community revitalization, and investments in cleaning our brownfields and waterways.
Frogtown Gardens, under whose auspices this project was conceived, states its mission as “growing a greener, healthier neighborhood,” by promoting “healthy, sustainable development.” Without doubt, this new, multi-faceted park will be the manifestation of that mission.
Frogtown Farm will be nestled into a new city park on a spectacular site, and it will bring a critical new facility to the Frogtown community. The median income of the surrounding neighborhood is $28,800, with 40% of the residents living below the poverty level. This amazingly diverse community of approximately 15,000 people is very poorly served by parkland and public open space. The City, in conjunction with the Wilder Foundation and Frogtown community, recognizes the need and is responding with the creation of a new park, which will contain three acres for active recreation, a nature sanctuary on four acres, and Frogtown Farm on five acres. Together, these elements will define what the “park of the 21st century” will look like. It’s a pioneering and exciting undertaking.