County Parks in East Orange and Orange get $300,000 in Grants for Improvements

Essex County, NJ – Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. announced that Essex County awarded $3.15 million in Local Aid grants to 21 municipalities in Essex County. East Orange and Orange and will receive $150,000 each for Columbian Park playground improvements, and Colgate Park Pool improvements, totaling $300,000 between the two towns. 

The funds came from the Essex County Recreation and Open Space Trust Fund and will be used to improve municipal playgrounds, recreation and athletic facilities, community swimming pools and parks infrastructure. This is the sixth round of grant funding Essex County has provided to the municipalities from the Essex County Recreation and Open Space Trust Fund since 2003.

“I am pleased to partner with our municipalities and the Trust Fund to modernize athletic fields, create skate parks, upgrade community pool infrastructure, restore public gardens, build playgrounds, stabilize waterways and acquire open space, to name just a few of the projects funded by this program through the years. These improvements have kept our parks up to date and enabled our open spaces to meet the changing needs and growing demands of our residents,” DiVincenzo said. “When the 2020 application process for the Local Aid Program began last year, the Coronavirus was not even on our radar. Now, as restrictions are being lifted and we return to a new normal, our parks and recreation spaces will have an even greater role than before. Families breaking free of stay-at-home orders will be looking for outlets and the construction contracts that will be awarded will help jumpstart the economy and create jobs, just as we did with the program in 2009 after the Great Recession,” he added.

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Amount Awarded




Fairway Park Improvement Project



Memorial Park Tennis/Pickle Ball Court Improvements



Harrison School Field Improvements

Cedar Grove


Community Park Playground Improvements

East Orange


Columbian Park Playground Improvements



Hollywood Avenue Park Renovations Phase 2

Glen Ridge


Hurrell Field Sports Track Improvements



Orange Park Pools Renovation



Livingston Community Center and Northland Park Playground Replacement Project



Repair of Civic House Bridge in Memorial Park



Taylor Park Improvements



Rand and Canterbury Park



Ridgewood Avenue Park Project

North Caldwell


Walker’s Pond Dredging



Glotzbach Park Band Shelter Project



Colgate Park Pool Improvements



Rehabilitation of Tedesco Park

South Orange


Carter Park Renovation



Accessible Play Area and Adult Exercise Area at Liberty Field

West Caldwell


Harrison School Field Improvements

West Orange


Degnan Park Softball Field Improvements





Each of the 22 municipalities in Essex County were eligible to receive a $150,000 grant to help fund a local parks improvement project. These awards are outright grants; the municipalities did not have to provide matching funds. Essex Fells did not submit an application for funding.

Approved by voters in 1998, money from the Essex County Recreation and Open Space Trust Fund can be used to maintain recreation facilities, acquire open space, preserve historic sites or support projects that enhance water quality or flow. The Trust Fund receives its funding from a dedicated tax that is collected quarterly from property owners.

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