Depave Chicago and The Montessori School of Englewood
Depave Chicago and The Montessori School of Englewood are partnered on the first pilot project for this emerging community-based depaving program in Chicago. The project involves depaving 10,000 SF of the school's primary playground and transforming it into a green, living schoolyard. Depave Chicago is part of a larger international network of organizations focused on depaving parking lots and asphalt playgrounds in disinvested communities where improving ecological well-being is essential for community regeneration and quality of life. TMSOE (an elementary-middle charter school in West Englewood) is undertaking this project to create a safe, healthy, and life-affirming environment for its students and teachers and a space that signals care and future-building within the broader community. The DepaveChicago/TMSOE partnership is an opportunity to dialog with city agencies and organizational leaders about urban adaptation, community engagement, and urgently-needed transformation of the paved urban environment. Depave Chicago is financially supported by the Walder Foundation to host webinars, trainings, equipment purchasing, and design and engineering services for the pilot project. The Depave Chicago program organizational start-up is guided by Depave in Portland, Oregon, the first established depaving organization in the USA. Dozens of volunteers across Chicago have reached out to get involved in the planning and depaving for this pivotal site.