SGA, Sustainable Strategies DC and Toole Recreation Planning were retained to prepare a comprehensive parks master plan for a 200 acre site located at the perimeter of the City of Butler, PA. Half of the site was created as park and recreation grounds for the benefit of the large number of employees at the former Pullman Company’s nearby rail car manufacturing facility located in the City of Butler. The remainder of the site was the location of Preston Laboratories, the home to noted glass scientist and environmental conservation pioneer, Dr. Robert Preston. The site includes a complex of former scientific research buildings and the home of the late Dr. Preston. In addition to the research facility, a large area on the site was established as an ecologic conservation area which includes a lake and a dam, as well as an extensive trail network.
SGA and its team was tasked with develop a master plan which includes economically viable strategies for the reuse of the extensive structures on the site as well as creating a comprehensive set of management guidelines. A major focus of the effort is the formation of non-governmental partnership to aid in the management and maintenance of the site, to ensure that it is a high-quality facility, yet not an economic “white elephant” to the municipality. Part of the project includes identifying a federal, state and foundation funding and financing strategy, especially focused on the historic preservation and green infrastructure attributes of the site.