DETROIT — The Viola Liuzzo Park Association and the city of Detroit will host a dedication to officially cut the ribbon on the completely rejuvenated park on the city’s northwest side. The park honors Detroiter Viola Liuzzo, who was murdered in Alabama in 1965 for her support and activism in the civil rights movement.

Funding for the park’s improvements came from a collaboration of public and private dollars. State Rep. Leslie Love (D-Detroit) secured a $125,000 state grant to improve the park and a $25,000 grant from the Quicken Loans Community Investment Fund that was used to build a statue of the civil rights icon.

“The perseverance, resilience and resourcefulness displayed by the members of the Viola Liuzzo Park Association are very much like Mrs. Liuzzo herself; they are dedicated to ensuring this neighborhood remains a safe and viable area to live. I am proud of the work that’s been done here,” Love said. “And I am proud of the city’s initiative to promote the protection and restoration of our water — and homes — through this innovative approach.”

           The park is not only beautiful but also functional and includes gardens and three bioswales that will retain and divert rainwater runoff to prevent overwhelming the city’s sewer system. As a member of the Great Lakes Legislative Caucus and the Michigan Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus, Rep. Love is extremely proud to see the initiatives she discusses in the Legislature come to fruition in her district.

“We need more investment in our parks and greenways,” Love said. “A growing body of evidence says that increasing high-quality green space can generate wide-ranging benefits for the environment, the economy and the health and well-being of our citizens.”

Love has helped secure funding to parks in the 10th House District, like  $50,000 to renovate Kraft Park in Redford, private funds for O’Hair Park in Detroit, as well as the grants for Viola Liuzzo Park.

Liuzzo Park is the final park to be officially dedicated of the “40 Neighborhood Parks Initiative” that Mayor Mike Duggan announced in 2016. The ribbon cutting celebration will take place on Saturday, September 29 at 11 a.m. at the park located at 20053 Winthrop St. in Detroit.