National organization picks Red Mountain Park for its innovative practices in partnerships and fundraising
In recognition of its unique approach to partnerships and fundraising, Red Mountain Park has been named one of 12 “Frontline Parks,” a nationwide contest sponsored each year by City Parks Alliance.
Red Mountain Park was selected through a peer review process from a field of more than 40 entries across the country.
Being named a Frontline Park is extremely exciting for us”, said the Park’s Executive Director, David Dionne. “Our goal here is to build the Park in the community while building the community into the Park. We have everything we need to succeed. We have an award-winning design, an incredible place that combines history, the environment and spiritual significance into one place, surrounded by a community that invests time, resources and talent with enthusiasm. I want people in Birmingham to weave this park right into the fabric of their lives. I want them to play, move, relax, visit and grow with one another here. I will know we will have been successful when one day in the near future people will wake up and truly wonder how they got along for all these years without Red Mountain Park.”
Red Mountain Park provides universally accessible recreational opportunities, and is a financially self-sustaining urban park that is not reliant on government funding.
“We selected Red Mountain Park as a Frontline Park because it exemplifies the power of urban parks to build community and make our cities sustainable and vibrant,” said Catherine Nagel, Executive Director, City Parks Alliance. “We hope that by shining the spotlight on Red Mountain Park, we can raise awareness about the ways investment in our nation’s urban parks pays off.”
The park is built on a mountain that was the main source of iron ore for Birmingham’s iron and steel industry. U.S. Steel ceased ore mining on the site in the 1960s, leaving the private land vacant for more than forty years. In 2005, the company sold 1,200 acres of land atop the mountain to the Freshwater Land Trust for less than half its value and contributed $1 million in seed money to develop a public park on the site, effectively doubling the amount of greenspace in the city of Birmingham.