YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Later this summer, The Raymond John Wean Foundation Park will serve as a community complex, including The Youngstown Foundation Amphitheatre, 20 acres of recreational green space and 1.25 miles of walking paths.
JAC Management Group and the City of Youngstown announced Monday that The Raymond John Wean Foundation secured the named rights to the riverfront park with a 15-year agreement at $125,000 annually. The space includes the Huntington Bank Community Alley under the Market Street bridge. The agreement was first reported Saturday by The Business Journal, which noted city council must ratify the deal at its meeting Wednesday.
“This investment is a continuation of a long-followed practice of supporting initiatives that strengthen community through engaging residents,” said Jennifer Roller, president of The Raymond John Wean Foundation, in a release. “We look forward to the Wean Park being filled with the diversity and vibrancy of residents, for years to come. A place where it’s always apparent that downtown is everybody’s neighborhood.”
“JAC will manage the park, which will serve as the new front door to downtown, but most importantly it will create opportunities for residents to engage in community activities and come together,” said Eric Ryan, president. The relationship with the Wean Foundation will also lead to new initiatives with JAC and the city, he said in the release.
“This private/public partnership is a great example of what can happen when multiple entities work together for a common goal,” said Mayor Jamael Tito Brown. “The name of the park, The Raymond John Wean Foundation Park, is a great example of how we have worked to repurpose the space that originally held the Wean United building. I am very thankful for The Raymond John Wean Foundation for seeing the benefit of this park as much as I do.”
Part of the agreement includes the hiring and oversight of Derrick McDowell as Community Engagement and Inclusion Coordinator, a position he accepted earlier this year.
“My mission is to engage and include every willing resident of this city, and those that surround it, so that they feel welcome to fully participate and enjoy the beautiful, all-inclusive facilities of The Youngstown Foundation Amphitheatre and Huntington Bank Community Alley; all anchored by the wonderful Wean Park.”
Learn more at WeanPark.com.
Copyright 2019 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.
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