Libba Cotten Grove - Castle and State St. Park
City of Syracuse Department of Parks and Recreation - 2002

Ronald O. Jennings

Planning and Development
Lyle Halbert
Alix Krueger
Glen Lewis
Juan C. Beltran

Cultural and Recreational stimulation for the area Remembering and honoring Libba’s legacy Improving the quality of life for neighbors and user.

Design Elements and Symbolism
A classic guitar, its components and musical notes are the theme’s main elements, which reflects the cultural aspect of this neighborhood park.

Park Components

Main entrance and two secondary entrances are proposed. Vertical elements and new pavement give a new sense of entrance.

Provides an opportunity for tots and older youth to use play equipment in safe conditions. The tot playground has seating allowing parents to be close to children visually and spatially.

(click on the image to view the site master plan.)
Basketball Courts
Two basketball courts located north represents the main sport facilities.

Picnic Area – Art Plaza
The picnic area is a formal plaza where park users can shared space at the tables and enjoy near by arts expressions.

Seniors Plaza – The Musical Grove
This is a gathering space that has a seating area for seniors as well as some symbolic elements related with Mrs. Cotton’s artistic life.

Multipurpose Area
This space provides with an opportunity for cultural performances and art expressions. Vehicular accessibility is restricted to the bandwagon and equipment supporting events, which must be located in a designated area. In addition, rolling skating is accommodated by a special color trail at the edges of the stage area.

Parking Lot
Reuse and rehabilitation of the 1100 block of Montgomery Street. The park benefits from parking area adjacent to the sport facilities. 30 to 40 parking slots are provided for visitors including less-able people.

Project Bid and Phasing
Bid documents including specifications and drawings should be ready for submission to the Purchase Department early April 2002. The project will be bid with a series of alternate items to accommodate final project budget and results of land acquisition and street abandonment now being pursued by the Law Department.

Project Cost
The $125,000 budget of Parks capital funds will include new playground and basic site work.

Project Completion Date
Sixty to ninety days after executed contract.

Elizabeth “Libba” Cotten (1891-1987)

-Contributions to American folk music
-Unique left-handed style of playing the guitar
-Syracuse’s first Living Treasure (1983)
-The Libba Cotten Grove living memorial (1984)
-GRAMMY Award-winning, at age 93 (1985)
-SAMMY Award Hall of Fame (1996)
-Most famous song: “Freight Train”
-Favorite guitar: “Stella”

Conceptual Diagram
Detail - Cultural and Recreational Area
Mark Topp - Graphics/Artist
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