Reimagine Kensington at DesignPhiladelphia

By Sharon Leshner on Sep 22, 2016

Reimagining Kensington: Revitalization of Waterloo Playground
Monday, October 10th, 3pm to 5pm
Waterloo Playground, 2501 Waterloo Street, Philadelphia 19133
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Reimagining Kensington: Triple Bottom Line Happy Hour
Monday, October 10th, 6pm to 8pm
Honeygrow HQ, 1601-1699 North Front Street, Philadelphia 19122
$35 General Admission
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JDT International Inc., Urban Roots and Connor Barwin’s Make the World Better Foundation are excited to share our collaborative work through two events as part of the 2016 DesignPhiladelphia festival. Under the heading of “Reimagining Kensington,” the two events are: (1) a public launch for the revitalization and redesign of Waterloo Park and (2) a happy hour reception hosted by Honeygrow HQ. Both of these events will showcase projects in the Kensington, Fishtown and Norris Square neighborhoods that involve community-engaged design process and present examples of real estate and business development in the neighborhood that creatively adapts existing infrastructure and reclaims vacant land. Through these events, we are especially excited to share how thoughtful and innovative collaborations between for-profit and non-profit entities can create Triple Bottom Line initiatives that can create real and lasting community revitalization.

JDT International Inc. is a Fishtown/Kensington-based development firm that specializes in Public/Private Partnerships in Urban Planning and Real Estate Development. Prominent residential and mixed-used projects include Frankford Stacks and the Frankfordian, both located on the 2000 block of Frankford Avenue, and the upcoming Hope Street apartments that will be completed in spring 2017.

In the same year that JDT International Inc. was founded, Urban Roots, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that works with communities to plan & implement urban redevelopment projects, was formed. Urban Roots focuses on youth engagement and development, offering year-round mentorship programs connecting youth from across Philadelphia to professionals in the fields of architecture, construction and engineering. The goal of the mentorship programs is to excite and enlighten high school students to embrace civic stewardship and consider careers in urban and community development. In tandem with youth-focused programs, Urban Roots invests in long-term community-based revitalization projects that infuse innovative arts and design to the process of transforming public spaces.

Central to Urban Root’s vision is the importance of involving youth and community through all phases of a public space development project, from concept to ribbon cutting and through ongoing programming and user-ship. We are thrilled and we have been extremely fortunate to have joined forces with Make the World Better Foundation, a non-profit established by Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Connor Barwin in 2013. MTWB believes that communities prosper when young people have access to athletics and the arts, and works to ensure that every child has access to play spaces that are safe, fun, and educational. Working together, we have successfully transformed Ralph Brooks Park In Point Breeze are currently constructing a $2,000,000 state-of-the-art Turf Football field surrounded by basketball courts, innovative and educational play spaces, and unique fitness trail and pod.   

Looking forward to 2017, we are planning a community-driven redesign of Waterloo Playground in Norris Square (North Philly), building off the momentum of the Community Design Collaborative’s recent Infill Philadelphia Play Space design competition that began to collect community feedback and yielded innovative design concepts for revitalizing the playground as a public space. Together, JDT and Urban Roots/Make the World Better Foundation are poised to make a socially tremendous impact in local communities. We hope you’ll join us during DesignPhiladelphia 2016 to learn how you can get involved!

Web: http://jdtinternational.com/         http://www.urbanrootsphl.org/      http://www.mtwb.org/

Instagram: @UrbanRootsPHL @JDT_Intl @mtwbFoundation