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Desperate for change, residents, business owners and community leaders have come together with a common goal to restore pride in the neighborhood and create beautiful, usable open space for children to play, families to gather and the community to leverage in building new economic opportunities.

Marlborough has seen positive progress over the past decade. The City of Kansas City, Missouri, has invested close to $70 million in storm water, street and sidewalk infrastructure in Marlborough, including raingardens, bioswales and large-scale storm water detention facilities that will address major flooding and water quality issues in the community.

And in 2013, the Marlborough Community Coalition completed the Catalyst Plan, which identifies and prioritizes improvements for the five neighborhoods in Marlborough and lays out an action plan for implementation. The Catalyst Plan has stimulated community revitalization through additional public green space, the redevelopment of a vacant school and coalition capacity-building efforts.

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Marlborough Community Coalition (MCC) members. From left to right: Brenda Thomas, Diane Herschberger, Michelle and Dale Collins 


Building on the city’s infrastructure investments and the Marlborough Community Coalition’s Catalyst Plan, The Conservation Fund and U-Haul partnered with Heartland Conservation Alliance, the Marlborough Community Coalition, the City of Kansas City, Missouri, and other local stakeholders to develop public green space around a wetland basin built by the city, which will include community gathering space, playground areas, an outdoor amphitheater, recreational opportunities and native gardens, all designed with extensive input from the Marlborough community. Our efforts also provide workforce training opportunities for residents and will generate additional economic investment within walking distance from the green space.

Why This Project Matters

We believe green spaces are the cornerstones of vibrant urban communities. In Marlborough, green spaces will offer safer places for children to play, cleaner air and water, better resilience to floods, improved public health and opportunities for green jobs. Equally important, a revitalized Marlborough has the potential to unite people of all walks of life, demonstrating it can heal from the wounds of the past.

Preliminary design for Marlborough: Nature + Play:

81stTroost NE bird view no skatepark

Watch Community Partners Discuss the Benefits of Green Space in The Marlborough Neighborhood

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