Revitalizing Greenwich Common

The Greenwich Parks & Recreation Department is seeking approval to improve the appeal of Greenwich Common.

The entrance to Greenwich Common, July 14, 2014. Photo: Barbara Heins.
The entrance to Greenwich Common, July 14, 2014. Photo: Barbara Heins.

Making Greenwich Common a "premier attraction" in downtown Greenwich is the objective an ambitious project proposed by the Greenwich Parks & Recreation Department.

Detalis of the $433,000 plan were released at the July 10 Board of Selectmen meeting where Parks & Recreation Director Joseph Siciliano requested approval of a municipal improvement status of the project. If granted, municipal improvement status means the plan can be presented to the Planning and Zoning Commission. The town already has budgeted about $183,000 for the project with the remaining $250,000 tab covered by donations raised by the environmental group Greenwich Clean & Green.

The plan includes opening up the entrance to the park that is at the mid-way point of Greenwich Avenue — next door to the Board of Education headquarters and across from the intersection with Bruce Place and the Greenwich Senior/Arts Center.

Siciliano said that the plan, designed pro bono by architect John Conte, includes removal of the existing sidewalk that will be replaced with a brick sidewalk and larger entrances to attract pedestrians. The park will be made handicapped accessible. There will be game tables similar to what is found in New York City parks, for games including chess, Siciliano said.

"It's not that difficult of a project," Siciliano said. "It will make the park much more attractive — make it a premier destination. The goal is to enhance it and let people use it."

If approved by the selectmen at their July 24 meeting, the work could begin in September and be completed by late fall, according to Siciliano. He and Greenwich Green & Clean Director Mary Hull said they expect  more private donations will be made after the work begins. "It is truly a public-private partnership," Hull said.


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