54th Place Pocket Park 1
The new pocket park will replace 54th Place south of Riverdale Road. Google Maps.

Riverdale Park officials on Feb. 5 unanimously authorized the building of a 7,755-square-foot “pocket park” and a new tot lot. 

The park, which will replace 54th Place, a dead-end street south of Riverdale Road, will be similar to Hollywood Gatewood Park, the $1 million pocket park at the southeast corner of Baltimore Avenue and Edgewood Road. College Park has plans to build another one in the Berwyn neighborhood.

“This is an absolutely important and essential project for this community,” Ivy Lewis, the Riverdale Park director of Public Projects and Services, said.

Riverdale Park’s $341,699 contract with D&F Construction Co. will allow work to begin on the project, which is slated for completion in June. The park could cost up to $673,334 to complete, officials said.

The project is partially funded by a federal community development block grant for community needs, such as infrastructure, economic development, community centers and more.

Pocket parks generally are smaller than one-quarter acre and often are located in urban areas to make use of unused patches of green space.

Riverdale Park also has plans for two additional parks.

The 54th Place park will serve a “high-density, multifamily community with a lot of low-income residents,” Lewis said.

Plans for the park outline two play structures, including one for children ages 2-5 and the other for children ages 5-12. Along with these main structures, playground equipment will include a “We-Go-Swing,” which is wheelchair accessible. 

“We’re actually pretty excited about it,” Lewis said. “This is the town’s first project that we will own and maintain, and we’re happy that we’re at this stage. This is the final component to fall into place to actually complete the project.”