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Meadows Foundation Donates $500,000

DALLAS (April 1, 2010) — The Woodall Rodgers Park Foundation officially announces a $500,000 donation from The Meadows Foundation to help ensure that the Park is completed in 2012, and to support visual and performing arts programs for DISD students and the general public free of charge.

“The Meadows Foundation sees the many benefits The Park will provide our community,” said Chairman Jody Grant. “It is estimated that each year, during school days alone, over 150,000 children visiting our museums will be able to eat their lunch in the park instead of returning to the bus. That is just one small example of the many great things a central city park will bring to Dallas.”

 “The Meadows Foundation is pleased to support the Woodall Rodgers Park,” said Foundation President and CEO Linda Perryman Evans.  “This beautiful open space will be enjoyed by all, and will contribute to the ‘greening’ of our city.”

With the momentum of a $3 million donation from Chase in February and The Meadows Foundation in March, the Woodall Rodgers Park Foundation continues to aggressively raise funds towards the current $27 million capital campaign. The effort is focused on completing the special design features that will enrich the park experience for visitors and the neighboring Arts District. The Foundation is also working to make sure The Park will be maintained and managed at the highest level, while still providing free educational, cultural and recreational activities.

“The Park is a reality. With the support of a few more civic-minded donors, we can take this project from an urban green space to a truly vibrant heart of our city,” said Grant. “We want The Park to be a point of pride for Dallas, a hub, a place where people come together. We need your support.”

The Foundation has had tremendous success to date, raising more than $83 million in public and private funds. Key naming opportunities are still available, including the park’s overall name, the Children’s Garden, the Groves and Olive Plaza.

The Park is well underway with current construction of the center support wall between the east and westbound lanes of Woodall Rodgers Freeway. For more information, visit www.theparkdallas.org.


About The Park

The Park will serve as a central gathering space for Dallas and its visitors to enjoy in the heart of the city. The 5.2-acre deck park will create an urban green space over the existing Woodall Rodgers Freeway between Pearl and St. Paul streets in downtown Dallas. Plans include a performance pavilion, restaurant, walking trails, a dog park, a children’s discovery garden and playground, water features, an area for games and much more.

Construction on the deck plaza began in October 2009. The base park is expected to be complete in early 2012 with amenities expected to be complete in late 2012.
 
The Park is funded through a public-private partnership including $20 million in bond funds from the City of Dallas, $20 million in highway funds from the state and federal government through TxDOT, and a projected total of $52 million from private donations. In March, the Park was selected to receive $16.7 million in stimulus funds that are specifically for transportation enhancement construction.

The Park will be owned by the City of Dallas and operated by the private Woodall Rodgers Park Foundation. The Foundation has studied great public parks across the country and plans to bring best practices to The Park's operations, programming and maintenance.

The Office of James Burnett is designing the Park in conjunction with the engineering firm Jacobs. The office of Thomas Phifer and Partners is designing the restaurant and Muse Family Performance Pavilion. Bjerke Management Solutions is the project manager. The Texas Department of Transportation selected Archer Western as the contractor for construction of the deck plaza.

Jody Grant serves as Chairman of the Board of the Woodall Rodgers Foundation and is joined by President Linda Owen, and board members Nancy Best, Garrett Boone, Leo Corrigan, Ed Fjordbak, Sheila Grant, Jeff Jackson, John Muse, Rob Walters and John Zogg.


About The Meadows Foundation

The Meadows Foundation is a private philanthropic institution established in 1948 by Algur H. and Virginia Meadows to benefit the people of Texas. The Foundation's mission is to assist the people and institutions of Texas improve the quality and circumstances of life for themselves and future generations.

Algur Meadows built General American Oil Company of Texas into one of the nation’s most successful independent oil and gas production companies. Believing that his own life was greatly enriched by giving, Meadows generously shared his wealth with many charitable causes benefiting the people of the state that had been so kind to him. Wishing to share the joy of giving with their extended family, both living and yet unborn, Algur and Virginia Meadows established The Meadows Foundation so that their philanthropy would continue in perpetuity, under the guidance and direction of family members and trusted advisors.

Since its inception, the Foundation’s assets have grown to a current value in excess of $670 million, and it has disbursed over $660 million in grants and direct charitable expenditures to over 2,900 Texas institutions and agencies. Foundation grants support work in the fields of arts and culture, civic and public affairs, education, health, and human services. The foundation also had a particular interest in three areas: public education (particularly in the areas of early childhood development, enhanced reading skills, and teacher preparation), mental health, and the environment. It also seeks to develop a philanthropic spirit among high school and middle school parents and has awarded in excess of $2.3 million to over 350 schools in North Texas whose students planned and carried out community service programs.

The Foundation looks for programs and services that employ imaginative, innovative ways to solve community problems through projects leading to organizational self-sufficiency and in capital plans that enable agencies to flourish. It seeks to support projects that can alleviate pain, enhance social skills and promote better human relations.

Among its philanthropic initiatives, the Foundation has established the Wilson Historic District near downtown Dallas. Here, 36 nonprofit agencies are provided rent-free office space, as well as management and technical assistance, in elegantly restored turn-of-the-century homes and buildings and new structures. Considered a benchmark for historic preservation and a model project in which to house nonprofit agencies, The Wilson Block, within the 24-acre Wilson Historic District, has earned a listing on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Meadows Foundation is among the most recognized private philanthropies in the country. It has received numerous awards for both its philanthropy and its management. It was the first recipient of the Texas Medal of the Arts for sustained support of arts and culture in Texas, and was named Outstanding Foundation of the year by the National Society of Fund Raising Executives. For additional information, visit The Meadows Foundation web site at http://www.mfi.org.  
 
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