The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control has awarded $150,000 to Delaware City to be used to improve recreational facilities, study and develop a plan to improve energy consumption and develop rain gardens and bioswales at the city’s community center, DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin announced Jan. 7.
“The funds will focus on green technology, energy conservation and environmental projects that will benefit Delaware City and surrounding areas,” said Garvin.
The funds will help Delaware City pave its Community Center parking lots and basketball court. This, along with incorporating rain gardens around the property, will improve the water quality at the facility and reduce stormwater runoff. Using pervious pavement for the parking lot and basketball court will allow rainwater to be absorbed back into the city’s groundwater. In addition, both surfaces are more than 20 years old and are starting to create safety concerns. The Community Center houses the Delaware City Library, Police Athletic League Center, Reedy Point Players community theater group and various classes offered through New Castle County.
A comprehensive energy audit to be performed on the Town Hall and Community Center will identify areas where improvements can be made to conserve energy. Both buildings are more than 60 years old, with minimal capital upgrades over the years. Energy conservation measures will also complement a solar farm installed several years ago on property donated to the city by PBF Energy, and help to maintain Delaware City’s commitment to the environment and fiscal responsibility.
Renovations include multiple phases that will occur over the next year. Included in this plan are the basketball court at the 7th Street Park, utilizing pervious pavement; performance of energy audits on all city-owned property and development of a plan to improve efficiencies and reduce energy consumption; rain gardens and bioswales to be incorporated into parks and community center properties; and a citywide paving assessment to explore options for additional pervious pavement.