Ezekiel Gillespie Park Opening
Earlier today political, neighborhood, and civic leaders cut the ribbon to open Ezekiel Gillespie Park. This small “pocket park” located at the corner of N. 14th and Wright St. on Milwaukee’s north side may seem like a small contribution to the neighborhood, but it is actually a significant step towards transforming Milwaukee. Built on a site that once had a foreclosed home as well as three vacant lots, this park incorporates storm water management features designed with neighborhood involvement that could serve as a national model for sustainable development.
Despite being a few miles outside of the Gateway to Milwaukee business district, Ezekiel Gillespie Park has many ties to our area, primarily because of Bryan Simon’s involvement. Local businesses may know Bryan as the owner and manager of Simon Landscape Co., but he is also a Director of the Airport Gateway Business Association, volunteer on our Beautification Committee, Chair of the Green Corridor, and Executive Director of the Energy Exchange non-profit. Through all of these efforts, Bryan has been a leader in advocating for, designing, and installing sustainable improvements. It is a great to see Bryan bringing sustainable best practices to other areas of Milwaukee.
The City of Milwaukee’s Home GR/OWN initiative was this project’s lead sponsor as they address the City’s vacant lot and foreclosed home issue. Much of the work was conducted by Walnut Way Conservation Corp’s Blue Sky Landscaping with support from many other community groups. Celebrating the park’s opening were Mayor Tom Barrett, Milwaukee Adermen Murphy and Stamper, Senator Lena Taylor, OES Director Matt Howard, among other key local leaders.