The Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Commission (PaRC) is inviting public input on a proposal by the National Audubon Society, an international non-profit conservation organization, and Outward Bound Philadelphia, an affiliate of the national Outward Bound organization, to build an educational center for conservation and leadership development on the banks of the East Park Reservoir next to the Strawberry Mansion neighborhood. The Audubon/Outward Bound partnership is proposing to develop the 37 acres surrounding a man-made lake that was once part of Philadelphia’s water supply system. The elevated site, which runs along 33rd street in the Strawberry Mansion neighborhood, is closed to the public and largely hidden from view by chain link fencing and dense vegetation. Outward Bound Philadelphia is plans to use the new facility as its headquarters, while Audubon expects to establish a hub for research and science-based conservation projects and programs in the Philadelphia region. The facility will be known as the East Park Leadership and Conservation Center. Many entities have voiced their support for the proposal.
In compliance with the Open Lands Protection Ordinance, PaRC is conducting a review of the proposal with opportunity for the public to comment. View the Alternatives Analysis on the Parks and Recreation Department Web page; the link to the full PDF is posted in Announcements. To read and post online comments, Click Here. Those wishing to submit written comments may send them to PaRC via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org . A public hearing on the Audubon/Outward Bound proposal is scheduled for the February 27, 2013 meeting of the Commission to be held at 6:00 p.m. at Mander Recreation Center, 2140 N. 33rd Street.