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ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), April 18, 2015 - The Clayton Century Foundation (CCF) has announced a major gift from the Chapman family and Barry-Wehmiller.
Bob Chapman is Chairman and CEO of Barry-Wehmiller, a global capital equipment and engineering solutions company, with headquarters in Clayton across from Shaw Park. Chapman is a resident of Clayton and has long recognized the value of Shaw Park as a place of beauty, respite and activity for both the Clayton community and the St. Louis region. Initially through a pledge agreement and now as a cash gift, the amount of $500,000 was recently received by CCF. Additional gifts over the next thirty (30) months, including the initial donation, will total $4.5 million.
CCF will use this gift to fund the creation of a new Plaza at the corner of Brentwood and Forsyth in Downtown Clayton. The Donors have provided an additional pledge to CCF for all project maintenance costs over a 20-year post-installation period.
The Plaza will serve as the Shaw Park North pedestrian entryway, thereby providing a link for the park to Downtown Clayton. A Concept Plan includes café tables, a garden area and fountain, trellis colonnades and pedestrian-friendly improvements to the crosswalk connection at this major intersection. The Plaza will seamlessly connect to existing quiet, green spaces in the park.
A Plaza fountain will be the source of a water cascade into the northern-most corner of the park. Improvements will include a small pond that will provide not only aesthetic enhancement but also offer major storm water management. A pedestrian bridge, additional seating and extensive plantings will allow the North end of the park to become more accessible and inviting as a destination for workday lunches and weekend family picnics.
The Concept Plan was privately funded in 2013 and developed with input received during public meetings of the City's Parks and Recreation Commission, Board of Aldermen and CCF Board. Additional input was included from the City's Public Works Department.
Renderings have been presented at multiple City events over the past two years and discussed at public forums. During the next eight months, the Concept Plan will evolve into schematic design, with a detailed budget and construction documentation. Throughout the design and development process, residents and businesses will have an opportunity to be part of this public engagement. It is anticipated that construction of the Plaza for Shaw Park North will begin in early 2016 and be completed by the end of that year.
With this sizable gift to CCF, the entire Plaza project will be fully designed and constructed with privately donated dollars. The CCF funds will allow the City to contract for and oversee the design and construction process, with continuing input from a Steering Committee representing various constituents.
Mr. Chapman has repeatedly expressed his enthusiasm for this undertaking, "I am confident that Shaw Park North will be a transformative project that will accelerate other visionary investments and bring a whole new sense of excitement and pride to downtown Clayton."
"A gift over time of $7,000,000 to CCF is truly astounding in its magnitude and impact," stated Judy R. Goodman, President of the Clayton Century Foundation. "We are exceedingly grateful to Bob Chapman, his family and company for envisioning the potential for Shaw Park North Park and investing at a level which will make the project become a reality."
Upscale condominiums and tall, contemporary office buildings frame the central business district of Clayton. This area, located between Maryland Avenue on the north, Shaw Park to the west and Forest Park Blvd along the south, is headquarters to many Fortune 500 companies.
Visitors and residents can browse through a fine selection of art galleries, bookstores and specialty boutiques. Several wine shops, jewelers, florists and music stores and numerous antique shops can be found. For business travelers and vacationers, Clayton offers outstanding accommodations and is only 15 minutes from Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, and just 10 minutes from downtown St. Louis.
Dining in Clayton is a gourmet delight with over 65 restaurants. Spend a leisurely afternoon at one of many outdoor cafes or enjoy elegant dining by candlelight at a fine restaurant. Each year, the downtown Clayton area hosts special events including the 'Taste of Clayton' food festival, 'Parties in the Park', the 'Saint Louis Art Fair' and 'Gallery Nights in Clayton.'
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