Delaware County Invests Nearly $5M in Green Spaces, 22 Projects Funded

Delaware County

MEDIA, PA — Imagine this: A newly transformed trail easing your commute, an expanded basketball court offering a perfect spot for your weekend games, or a new park that enhances your neighborhood’s aesthetic charm. Thanks to the Delaware County Council, these visuals will soon become a reality for several municipalities in the county.

In a forward-looking move, Delaware County has allocated nearly $5 million in new Delco Green Ways Grants. This is the fourth time the county has distributed funds aimed at progressing the County’s 2035 Open Space, Recreation, and Greenway plan goals, which centre around three primary objectives: Conserve, Enhance, and Connect.

Twenty-two projects across 20 municipalities and one non-profit organization will benefit from this funding round. The granted amounts vary, with the upper echelon of $500,000 assigned for trail connectivity work in Upper Darby Township. On the other end of the spectrum, a modest $39,960 will support a trail feasibility and connectivity study in Upper Chichester.

This Green Ways program, approved in 2016 and launched in 2019, was floated with an ambition to improve the quality of life of county residents, workers, and visitors. The projects in this year’s funding round underline the program’s popularity and impact, with a total of 47 applications requesting over $10 million.

The Delco Green Ways Grants stand as a testament to the county’s commitment to improving quality of life, making our communities more vibrant, green, and accessible for all,” said Delaware County Council Member Elaine Paul Schaefer. She added that the council is excited to fund a wide range of projects that enhance and connect green spaces in Delaware county.

READ:  Pennsylvania Launches Pioneering Organic Inspector Apprenticeship Program with $350,000 Grant

Gina Burritt, Director of the Delaware County Planning Department, shares this enthusiasm. She stated, “We’re excited to unveil the newest Delco Green Ways Grants, aimed at a wide array of initiatives including park expansion, trail development, and enhancements to existing parks and public areas.”

However, let’s take a step back to appreciate the impressive groundwork laid by the Delco Green Ways Grants. Since its inception, millions have been invested, resulting in ‘on the ground’ improvements across Delaware County. The program has consistently supported historically disadvantaged communities and has been successful in leveraging Green Ways Grant funds to the greatest extent possible.

In its 2019 maiden round, 38 grants were awarded, totaling $4.5 million. This impressive start was followed by a substantial investment of over $7 million in 2021’s second round, which funded 43 projects, including one non-profit and 38 municipalities. Only last year, the County Council awarded close to $5 million, benefiting 24 projects spread across 23 municipalities, and leveraging an additional $5.83 million of outside matching funds.

The Delco Green Ways Grants’ commitment to improving Delaware County’s landscapes and the lives of its residents shines through every project funded and every green space enhanced. With the latest round of funding, it’s clear that the county’s future is looking greener than ever.

greenways table

For the latest news on everything happening in Chester County and the surrounding area, be sure to follow MyChesCo on Google News and Microsoft Start.