Greater Harrisburg's Community Magazine

Harrisburg receives $2 million in grants to support park, playground, trail projects

A sign in Reservoir Park

Several Harrisburg parks soon will get a refresh, thanks to a series of grants the city recently received.

In total, Harrisburg was awarded $2.3 million in state and local grants for projects to improve parks, playgrounds and waterways.

Reservoir Park received several grants for projects, including its Chutes and Ladders Playground construction, the renovation of its trails and walkways, the addition of ADA-accessibility features and the development of play areas for toddlers.

Other awarded projects seek to restore the Paxtang Parkway Trail, rehabilitate the Parkway Creek and install a rain garden in Italian Lake.

Harrisburg also received money to develop a Comprehensive Recreation, Park and Open Space Plan. According to Dave Baker, parks and recreation director, the plan, which will detail the city’s goals and plans for its parks, will assist the department in receiving larger-scale grant funding.

Harrisburg was recently awarded grants for the following projects:

  • $250,000 from the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Community Conservation Partnership Program (C2P2) for the development of the Chutes and Ladders Playground in Reservoir Park.
  • $900,000 from the PennDOT Transportation Alternatives Set Aside (TASA) program for the Capital Area Greenbelt-Paxtang Parkway Trail Restoration project.
  • $5,000 from the Giant Heal the Planet program to install a rain garden at the north end of Italian Lake.
  • $275,000 from the DCNR C2P2 program for the rehabilitation and further development of Reservoir Park, including renovation of an internal loop trail, construction of ADA-accessible pedestrian walkways, construction of a “green” parking area, installation of stormwater management measures and installation of play equipment with required safety surfacing.
  • $58,900 from DCNR to prepare a Comprehensive Recreation, Park and Open Space Plan for Harrisburg.
  • $687,000 from the DCNR Rivers Conservation Program for the rehabilitation of the Parkway Creek including rehabilitation of about 1.3 miles of trail from Market to Derry streets, stream restoration, streambank stabilization, installation of stormwater management measures and construction of riparian forest buffer and ADA access.
  • $150,000 from the state Department of Community and Economic Development’s (DCED) Gateways, Trails, and Recreation Program (GTRP) for two tot lots in Reservoir Park,

The city also recently applied for $18 million from the state’s Department of Community and Economic Development’s (DCED) Community Development Block Grant-COVID (CDBG-CV) program. If granted, they plan to use the money for park, pool and Public Safety building renovations.

Harrisburg Mayor Wanda Williams has also proposed using $13 million in federal American Rescue Plan money to fund the building of a splash and slide park aquatic center in Hall Manor.


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