LouisvilleKY’s Olmsted Parks Gets a big financial shot in the arm

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (November 16, 2016) – Olmsted Parks Conservancy launched its Campaign for Extraordinary Parks in March 2014, with the goal of investing in much-needed Olmsted Park projects throughout Metro Louisville. Outcomes of these projects range from environmental protection, to community well-being and historic preservation. In less than three years, the Conservancy has raised $11.4 million and seeks just $200,000 more to achieve its fundraising goal.

To help complete the campaign, James Graham Brown Foundation has committed up to $100,000 for a dollar for dollar match by Conservancy supporters. The deadline, for the matching donations, is December 31, 2016.

“The Olmsted Park system is a significant community asset and integral part of Louisville’s quality of life. James Graham Brown Foundation is delighted to support the Conservancy with this grant, which will foster pride in our community through excellence in urban park preservation,” stated Mason Rummel, President, James Graham Brown Foundation.

Iroquois Park
Iroquois Park

While Louisville’s Olmsted Parks are public greenspaces, private funds are needed to fill the gap where the city budget is not sufficient. Since 1989, Conservancy donors have invested more than $35 million to keep these valuable community resources at the high standard they deserve.

Olmsted Parks Conservancy Trustee and Campaign Chair, Charles W. Schnatter (Chuck) noted, “Louisville is home to one of the largest Olmsted-designed park systems. With this comprehensive campaign, we want to not only protect what we have today, but also enhance the accessibility and usability of these natural gems for the future. We hope that all Louisvillians will help us to meet, or even exceed, the $100,000 challenge.”

Some of the many projects identified in the Campaign are either completed or underway, and include:

North Overlook restoration in Iroquois Park ($1,400,000)
Nature camps in Chickasaw Park ($30,000)
Limestone wall restoration, new restroom building in Boone Square ($525,000)
Restoration of the restrooms in Central Park ($165,000)
Relocation of play equipment and restroom restoration in Tyler Park ($840,000)
New walking path, improved lighting and basketball court, more trees and new playground and splash pad for Victory Park ($890,000)
Organic herbicide effectiveness study ($100,000)
Planting and maintaining trees system-wide, stonewall repairs ($200,000)
Restoration of Bonnycastle Hill/Hogan Fountain area in Cherokee Park including a new pavilion and parking areas ($1,100,000)
Maintain Woodlands Restoration investment and take on new projects for park health, including staff, tools, landscape materials, vehicle expenses. ($1,000,000)
Broad support for the Campaign for Extraordinary Parks has been received from individuals, corporations, foundations and Louisville Metro.

“We appreciate Olmsted Parks Conservancy for protecting the history of these parks, visualizing the future and raising funds to help the city provide more resources for our Olmsted Parks,” noted Mayor Greg Fischer.

“Partnerships are an essential piece in the parks and recreation realm that elevates the final product in all facets from program and amenity quality, to community engagement, to innovation, and the overall service levels. The partnership between Olmsted Parks Conservancy and Metro Parks and Recreation has been one such and continues to grow,” stated Seve Ghose, Director, Metro Parks and Recreation.

To donate towards the $100,000 goal, go at olmstedparks.org.

* * * *

Louisville Olmsted Parks Conservancy, Inc., a non-profit organization, was established in 1989 to restore, enhance and forever protect the Frederick Law Olmsted Parks and Parkways. Working as a non-profit partner with Metro Parks and Recreation, the Conservancy provides planning and funding for park improvements through donations from corporations, individuals and foundations. For more information, visit www.olmstedparks.org.