Akron Children’s Hospital Donates $2.5 Million To Akron Civic Commons Play Loop



Akron, OH (September 8, 2022) – Akron Children’s Hospital has donated $2.5 million to the Akron Civic Commons Locks 2, 3 & 4 Play Loop. This transformational project will provide essential park and public space for families, children and visitors to downtown Akron and will include naturally-designed park spaces that are accessible, welcoming and serve as a destination for healing, reflection and relaxation.

The total estimated cost of Locks 2, 3 & 4 Play Loop is $10 million, and it is a key part of the Akron Civic Commons project to develop accessible, equitable and welcoming parks, trails, and open spaces along the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail from downtown Akron to Summit Lake. Akron Children’s will make the donation over three years, with the first installment made in 2021.

“We are proud to partner with the City of Akron and Ohio & Erie Canalway Coalition to support the Akron Civic Commons 2.0, Locks 2, 3 & 4 Play Loop in downtown Akron,” said Akron Children’s President & CEO Chris Gessner. “This essential park space will provide the community with a much-needed destination for healing and relaxation along the Ohio & Erie Canal.”

The Locks 2, 3 & 4 Play Loop connects the Akron Children’s Hospital campus to downtown Akron along the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail. Akron Children’s donation will focus primarily on the Play Loop portion of the project.

City of Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan expressed his gratitude to Akron Children’s Hospital for its tremendous contribution, stating, “We are so grateful to Akron Children’s Hospital for their generous gift to the Akron Civic Commons 2.0, Locks 2, 3 & 4 Play Loop. Through the hospital’s incredible vision and leadership, we are creating a legacy park for future generations. We anticipate a groundbreaking for the redevelopment of Lock 3 Park this fall, and we’re excited to move forward with these important community projects.”

Akron Civic Commons 2.0 is coordinated by Ohio & Erie Canalway Coalition, in partnership with the City of Akron, and they serve as the fiscal agent and project manager. President and Chief Executive Officer Dan Rice stated, “We are overwhelmed with the generosity of the Akron Children’s Hospital’s incredible gift for the Akron Civic Commons 2.0, Locks 2, 3 & 4 Play Loop. This gift enables us to honor our commitment to our residents to co-create accessible, equitable and welcoming once-in-a-generation parks, trails, and open spaces along the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Trail.”

For more information about donation opportunities and Akron Civic Commons 2.0, please contact Dan Rice at drice@ohioeriecanal.org or (330) 374-5657.

The Reporter Newspaper