Leonardo"s Notebook by Mattheus Mei

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Marion Park getting much needed face lift

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South Carolina's Park in Washington DC is named after famed son, Francis Marion. The Park bound by South Carolina Avenue and E Street as well as 4th and 6th Street is maintained by the National Park Service, but hasn't seen much, if any change since the 1960s.

*That's about to change thanks to a wealthy Columbia financier. According to the Post & Courier, History Enthusiast John F. McCabe has gotten permission to give the park a much needed addition by none other than the President himself:
"One hundred and twenty years ago, this plot of land was placed on South Carolina Avenue and named after one our favorite sons, and it's been 120 years since anyone has thought about it," McCabe said. "We're finishing what should have been done a long, long time ago."

Mr. McCabe plans to place a memorial to Marion in the form of a statue in the center of the Park. According to the National Park Service there was a very large vase filled with tropical plants that would bloom in the center of the park and served as a guide for carriages - that was removed in 1963 and traffic paterns were redirected outside of the park. According to the article the statue of Marion isn't the only improvement that McCabe would like to see.

Ultimately, McCabe would like Marion Park to be reminiscent of colonial South Carolina. He originally envisioned brick-lined pathways and crushed oyster shells. The main attraction would be a larger-than-life bronze statue of Marion and a fountain with images from the Palmetto State.
The final design, though, must be approved the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts and
likely will be tailored to blend with the surrounding neighborhood, McCabe said.
The next step in the five-part process is to get the OK from the National Capital Planning Commission to actually build the Marion Park memorial Congress approved. That step, which involves environmental and traffic studies, will cost $50,000, McCabe said.
McCabe is trying to raise private funds with the help and oversight of the Palmetto Conservation Foundation. In all, the improvements to the park are estimated to cost roughly $500,000 to $750,000.

The hopes are that the park will serve as a source of pride for South Carolinians in the nations capital and draw interest and recognition to the Palmetto State.
*Picture from Post & Courier.

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