Buy us a coffee! Set up a $5 donation each month to keep community journalism alive!
Buy us a coffee! Set up a $5 donation each month to keep community journalism alive!
powered by bulletin

News & Views of Phillips Since 1976
Monday May 20th 2024

East Phillips Park Cultural and Community Center at 2300 17th Ave. Exemplifies reward of unity after 40 years of vision and six years of struggle

[Historical Note by Editor]: It has been forty years since hopes and visions of improvement to the two blocks of land between 17th and Cedar Avenues and 22nd and 24th Streets began.  Initial plans and proposals for dense housing were halted by limited citizen initiated political “arm twisting” that was nonetheless effective.  That effort led to park development limited to the barest of un-staffed, built facilities.  Six years ago that same awareness and tenacity of local residents– knowing their numbers and needs were greater than were being met and propelled by the obvious inequity of program and facility availability for local youth compared to other parts of the city””initiated concentrated focus on further improvement.

The January 22, 2011 Building Opening and Ribbon Cutting marks the culmination of six years of creative and determined effort by neighborhood organizations, residents, and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board with city, county, and state support.

The newly constructed 14,000 sq. ft. building features a high school-sized gym and adjacent kitchen, a teen center, computer lab, and rooms that will accommodate a variety of programming. At 30% more energy efficient than the average building in Minneapolis, the East Phillips building sets a new standard for energy efficiency in Park Board community centers.

“The East Phillips Park Cultural and Community Center is now the most beautiful recreation center in Minneapolis,” said Third District Commissioner Scott Vreeland, “and behind that external beauty is our most efficient building. This has been the most challenging project that I have worked on and is the result of an amazing amount of work by the surrounding community.”

Finishing touches will be ongoing during the first months the building is open. Bleachers will be installed, as well as other furnishings and equipment. Site work will also be underway again in the spring to complete stormwater ponds and landscaping. Ball fields are scheduled for renovation in 2011 thanks to a Hennepin County Sports grant.

In 2006, funds from the Minnesota Legislature were appropriated for construction of the EPCCC. Through ongoing meetings and discussions among the community, East Phillips Community Design Team, and MPRB, building plans were developed to meet the needs of the community.

“The East Phillips Park Cultural and Community Center is the result of a community dream,” said Brad Pass, chair of the East Phillips Park Community Design Team. “The project was initiated and guided by the people of the Phillips community.”Â  Carol Pass, president of the East Phillips Improvement Coalition added, “This is truly a grass roots accomplishment and an example of great things coming from humble beginnings through tenacity and strong collaboration.”

The entire project, which includes site improvements as well as the new building, has been funded by the state legislature ($3.5 million), the MPRB”'s 2008 Capital Improvement Program ($319,000), East Phillips Improvement Coalition NRP funding ($180,000) and another $50,000 for fundraising and consulting, Midtown Phillips Neighborhood Association ($5,000), Toyota Environmental Funds ($100,000), the Marbrook Foundation ($10,000), the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development ($300,000) and Hennepin County Environmental Response Fund ($271,328).

The EPPCCC is the first recreation center ever in East Phillips Park and the first built in the Minneapolis park system since 2001, when the Bottineau recreation center was rebuilt.

Related Images:

Reader Feedback

One Response to “East Phillips Park Cultural and Community Center at 2300 17th Ave. Exemplifies reward of unity after 40 years of vision and six years of struggle”

  1. […] development news, the Alley celebrates the opening of the East Phillips Park Cultural and Community Center, the Longfellow/Nokomis Messenger debates the fate of the Howe School, and the Northeaster […]

Leave a Reply

Copyright © 2024 Alley Communications - Contact the alley