Dungannon, VA: Town Playground Conceptual Master Plan
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The Town began efforts in 2014 to revitalize its downtown and restore economic stability to its community that leverages its abundant cultural and natural assets. Several of those assets include the Clinch River, the High Knob recreation area, the Scott County Horse Park, and the Flanary archeaology site. Dungannon has since been awarded an approximately $800,000 grant through the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) . This grant focuses on the downtown core, bringing various physical improvements to sidewalks, building facades, and creates a community greenspace with a farmer’s market. Virginia’s DHCD also awarded Dungannon a $100,000 Revolving Loan Fund grant that provides new entrepreneurs in the community access to local funds that kick starts their efforts or expands their services. These two grants established a strong coalition of community members that continuously look to improve their community. Despite the current momentum, there were still several physical improvement projects that lie outside the capabilities of existing funding, specifically in areas that targeted community youth. A central theme of Dungannon’s vision is to become a safer and healthier place for youth to grow up and return to live over the course of their life. There currently is limited access to youth-oriented facilities, such as playgrounds and outdoor learning. The Town of Dungannon partnered with the Dungannon Development Commission, Dungannon Intermediate School, Dungannon Youth Program Committee, and theAppalachian CAD Agency to create a new playground and environmental learning trail in Dungannon to serve the surrounding area. CDAC’s collaborative engagement process brought the community’s diverse ideas together into a conceptual design for a town playground that fosters physical exercise, provides environmental education opportunities, can be feasibly built, and maintained by the community.