be enjoyed forever," she declared on May 13 at a gathering of
involved officials, community activists and media
representatives called to mark the acquisition of the last piece
of property for the Blue Ball Project and the formal start of
development of its recreation and conservation component.
event, the governor said, was "the culmination of at least three
years of work and a complex planning process" which sought to
integrate the attraction of multinational Astra Zeneca's North
American operations headquarters to Delaware with preservation
of a large tract of open space in southern Brandywine Hundred.
Representative David Ennis and New Castle County Councilman
Robert Weiner traced the evolution back further. -- to a desire
to control flooding on Matson Run with upstream stormwater
retention and efforts to block construction of a shopping center
on the site of Rock Manor golf course, respectively.
scenarios came together with the purchase by the state, for a
total of $16.9 million, of three parcels of land straddling both
Concord Pike and Rockland Road from Al-Zar Ltd., the real estate
arm of the Alfred I. du Pont Trust and the Nemours Foundation.
In addition, the trust agreed to a permanent conservation
easement on some of its remaining property between the Nemours
estate and children's hospital and the parkland, said to be the
equivalent of a $6 million gift.
park is named for a small stream which runs through the site and
flows down a steep slope to empty into the Brandywine.
Salkin, director of parks, and Mark Chura, the Division of Parks
& Recreation manager who has spearheaded that agency's
involvement in the Blue Ball Project, confirmed that Alapocas
Run will not be a stand-alone park but an extension of Alapocas
Woods, one of three units which make up the city-owned,
state-run Wilmington Parks complex. The other units are Rockford
and Brandywine Parks.
said that talks are underway aimed at acquiring a small strip of
land owned by Wilmington Friends School and Papastavros
Associates, a medical testing firm, adjacent to Brandywine
Condominiums to provide the last link in the system. When that
is done there will be public walking access, by way of the
Northern Delaware Greenway, from Fox Point State Park on
the Delaware River through Blue Ball to downtown Wilmington.
that Delaware is the nation's seventh most densely populated
state, Nicholas Di Pasquale, secretary of natural resources &
environmental control, said that preservation of such and
amenity in an urban setting was a significant achievement.
said the parkland will be developed in stages -- the trail
system by spring of 2003, the reconstruction of the Blue Ball
dairy barn by the end of 2003 and the recreation area, with a
park road, sometime in 2005. Salkin said that the barn will be
under state auspices but that it is expected management of the
recreation area in the section of the part east of Concord Pike
will fall under the aegis of New Castle County.
Hayward, secretary of transportation, disclosed that Delaware
Department of Transportation has rejected all bids for building
a highway bypass to detour traffic during the construction of a
partial interchange at Concord Pike and Foulk Road and will put
the project out to bid again so that the state can accept 80%
federal financing of the job, expected to cost in the range of
$12 million. The resultant delay, he said, will be minimal.
six-lane bypass is to be reduced to a two lane secondary park
road when Concord Pike is reopened.
Montgomery, administrative aide to Mayor James Baker, said that
Lester George, a nationally renowned golf course architect, has
been engaged to design a realigned Rock Manor course and its
planning driving range and training facility.