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The fencing is in and the stakes have been placed. Construction is beginning on a completely revitalized Western Grove Urban Park, at the edge of Grove Street and Western Avenue. The new park will have lighted pathways, a water feature and seating plaza with Wi-Fi as well as a natural playspace and human sundial. Most of all, it preserves nearly two acres of rare, tranquil greenspace at the edge of the Village.
But the park has one more hurdle to cross. Due to a construction cost projection shortfall afflicting some Montgomery County building projects, the final bid cost was $200,000 over the Park’s Department’s estimates. (The county generally uses five year rolling averages to estimate costs, and one of the years had artificially low building costs due to lingering effects of the 2008-2009 recession.) In just one month, the Friends of Western Grove Park, aided by a generous matching donation of $50,000 approved by the Chevy Chase Village Board of Managers, has raised $144,845 to cover this shortfall and complete the park according to the final, full plans. Fifty-three Village families have generously given to support the park, and the Chevy Chase Garden Club has also donated funds that it raised during its recent garden tour.
Every donation makes a difference. The Friends of Western Grove Park Committee, appointed by the Village Board of Managers and chaired by long-time Village resident Meredith Wellington, is working hard to raise the remaining $54,000 by late July.
If you are considering donating, now is the time. This park will be a model for future Montgomery County Park efforts and will be a special place for the entire community to enjoy. For more information and to see drawings and designs of the park, please click on the "Western Grove Park" tab under Quick Links on the Village homepage.