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7/22/2015 - Bridgeport Awarded $50,000 Grant from NEA

“Investing in our parks and in the arts is increasing property values and reinvigorating our neighborhoods. It’s just one of the ways Bridgeport is getting better every day. I want to thank the City of Bridgeport’s Central Grants Office for the hard work applying and winning this grant. I also want to thank Senator Chris Murphy for his help down in D.C. making sure Bridgeport got the recognition and funding it deserves.” - Mayor Bill Finch

Bridgeport, Connecticut (July 22, 2015) – Today Mayor Bill Finch and Senator Chris Murphy announced that Bridgeport’s Johnson Oak Park and Tisdale School were awarded a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA.)

The grant is to support the creation of interpretive signage artwork at Johnson Oak Park and Tisdale School. The sculpture is one component of a larger park renovation and community engagement project taking place in Johnson Oak Park. The interpretive signage artwork will describe the site's cultural and natural history in an effort to build a sense of ownership and identity for people within the surrounding community.

“Investing in our parks and in the arts is increasing property values and reinvigorating our neighborhoods,” said Mayor Bill Finch. “It’s just one of the ways Bridgeport is getting better every day. I want to thank the City of Bridgeport’s Central Grants Office for the hard work applying and winning this grant. I also want to thank Senator Chris Murphy for his help down in D.C. making sure Bridgeport got the recognition and funding it deserves.”

The $50,000 is a part of the NEA’s Our Town grant program. The program supports projects that transform communities with creative placemaking. Creative placemaking is the process by which artists, arts organizations, and community development practitioners combine revitalization work with arts and culture. The funding supports local efforts to enhance quality of life and opportunity for existing residents, increase creative activity, and create a distinct sense of place.

Under Mayor Finch’s administration, the city has renovated and created over 100 acres of parkland. These improvements are part of Mayor Finch’s effort to give every family in Bridgeport access to a park or playground within walking distance.

Bridgeport is called the Park City, and it wants to make sure it’s living up to its name while improving the quality of life for its residents. Bridgeport is creating new parks and revitalizing old ones to give kids cleaner air to breathe and to revitalize neighborhoods.

Click here for more information on the Johnson Oak Park project: http://bit.ly/1fZp4nj.

Click here for the Johnson Oak Park Master Plan: http://bit.ly/1G3EpZl

“Living up to its name as the Park City isn’t just so Bridgeport kids have cleaner air to breathe, it also makes sound economic sense,” said Mayor Finch. “A recent study found that Bridgeport parks serve as a catalyst for neighborhoods, attracting investments and economic development. That’s a tangible win/win for families, businesses and the city.”

Mayor Finch recently opened Knowlton Park, a waterfront park along the Pequonnock River. The Mayor and the City of Bridgeport also continue to make improvements to the newly reopened Pleasure Beach, including the addition of a new playground.

For more information, contact Brett Broesder at (203) 257-1049 or brett.broesder@bridgeportct.gov.