Following approval by the Commonwealth Financing Authority, State Representative Mark Longietti, D-Mercer, announced a $52,275 grant has been awarded to the city of Sharon for construction of Wengler Park.
"This project, which will provide a neighborhood parkway for recreation programs and activities, is vital to the Sharon community," Longietti said. "By adding an attractive, recreational green space, this project will enhance and stabilize the surrounding neighborhood and allow for a future link between Wengler Park and other Shenango Valley communities."
Wengler Park, which will sit on the former site of the Wengler Avenue School, is part of a $61,500 project to turn the vacant space into a green space urban park. The Wengler Avenue School closed in 1983 and stood vacant until 2015 when officials in Sharon deemed the building a safety hazard and demolished it, though the land remained underused.
"Not only does this project remove what had been blighted and underdeveloped land, it will connect Wengler Park to an adjacent little league field and tennis court, both of which are located nearby," Longietti added.
The CFA funding will go toward adding trees, benches and 750 feet of sidewalk.
"This grant funding will help us accentuate how beautiful Sharon can truly be while making a more inviting place for families to enjoy the outdoors," said Janet Thomas, executive director of the Sharon Community Development Department.
The CFA was established in 2004 as an independent agency of the Department of Community and Economic Development to administer Pennsylvania's economic stimulus packages. The CFA holds fiduciary responsibility over the funding of programs and investments in Pennsylvania's economic growth. The CFA consists of seven board members: four legislative appointees and the secretaries of DCED, the Office of the Budget and Department of Banking.