Double Improvements for the Dr. Reverend J.W.H. Thomas Jr. Park
If you’ve driven past Dr. Reverend J.W.H. Thomas Jr. Park lately, or actually played on the playground or hung out in the Park at all, you would have certainly noticed some much needed – and now much appreciated! – improvements, thanks to the CRA.
The Delray Beach CRA was awarded the 2020 Solid Waste Authority Grant for Blighted and Distressed Properties Clean-Up and Beautification Grant in the amount of $22,800 for the park. Because of this, the team was able to begin renovation in the spring of 2021, which included removing and replacing 12 dead trees; replacing other dead landscaping such as shrubs, grass and ornamental flowers; perform landscaping maintenance, fertilization and irrigation repair; and restoring the entrance sign.
But, we couldn’t just stop there! After that initial round of improvement, CRA staff along with City Parks and Recreation Department looked at the existing playground equipment and determined that some pieces were broken and beyond repair. In an effort to make the playground safe and fun for kids, they decided it was a good time to upgrade the playground equipment, add a shade canopy, and add play turf so that kids can safely run around and use the play structure.
“Improving a community asset such as Dr. Rev. JWH Thomas Park is one way the CRA achieves its mission in revitalizing the physical environment,” said Christine Tibbs, CRA Assistant Director. “Investing in beautifying and enhancing parks and community spaces helps to stabilize communities and adds to the quality of life for residents. Dr. Rev. JWH Thomas Jr. Park is a community asset, and it can now be better utilized by all residents.”
The purpose of the CRA is to revitalize the physical environment and the economy of the Community Redevelopment Area. The CRA’s activities are designed to solve the underlying issues of slum and blighted conditions through planning, redevelopment, historic preservation, economic development and affordable housing so that the tax base can be protected and enhanced by these mutually supportive activities.
With the improvements, the playground equipment is now a full play structure where kids can climb and explore, the shade canopy will allow kids to safely and comfortably play outdoors during the day in the Florida sun, and community members can take advantage of the various exercise equipment around the perimeter of the park.
The project is slated to be completed shortly, so stay tuned for the big reveal, as well as future happenings from the CRA. The CRA is always looking for ways to enhance and improve community assets and facilities to improve the experience for all residents at the parks within the CRA District.
Dr. Reverend J.W.H. Thomas Jr. Park is located at 46 S.W. Ninth Ave. within the Southwest Neighborhood of Delray Beach. The park was originally completed in 2015 and named in honor of Dr. Reverend J.W.H. Thomas Jr. who was a pastor at the Saint Paul Missionary Baptist Church for 46 years.