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HOME GR/OWN Pocket Park: Ezekiel Gillespie Park at 14th & Wright Street

Honoring Milwaukee’s History & Helping Sustain Its Future

Ezekiel Gillespie (1818 - March 31, 1892) was an African-American civil rights and community leader who won a landmark case securing voting rights in Wisconsin and initiated Wisconsin’s first African Methodist Episcopal church.

Mayor Tom Barrett’s HOME GR/OWN Initiative pays tribute to the legacy of Ezekiel Gillespie by collaborating with community partners to repurpose vacant land into an attractive and environmentally sustainable park for neighborhood residents.


Anticipated Timeline:

Groundbreaking: 5/22/2014

Park Construction: 6/15/2014 - 7/15/2014

Parking Opening/Dedication: 8/1/2014





What makes Ezekiel Gillespie Park so awesome?

-Porous Pavers: Absorbs rain water, instead of repelling it

-Underground Rain Water Storage: Stores fallen rain water, which will be used to water plants of the park

-Fruit Trees & Bushes: Yummy healthy food

-Beautiful & Environmentally Sustainable


Groundbreaking Event 5/22/2014-- THANKS TO ALL WHO CAME AND SUPPORTED THIS EVENT!!


Mayor Barrett speaks about the history of Ezekiel Gillespie and the importance of the pocket park.

Alderman Stamper speaks to the benefits of Ezekiel Gillespie Park.

Lindsay Heights resident, Mrs. Virginia DuPriest, shares her involvement within the neighborhood.

And the groundbreaking commences with Mayor Barrett, Sharon & Larry Adams of Walnut Way, Department of Public Works Commissioner Korban, Kevin Shafer of Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewer (MMSD), District, Steve Mahan of Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) Administration, Alderman Stamper, Lindsay Heights resident Mrs. Virginia DuPriest, Tim McCollow of HOME GR/OWN.

ALL SMILES! Matt Howard, Director of the Office of Environmental Sustainability; Tim McCollow, HOME GR/OWN Program Manager;Shaiya Morris, HOME GR/OWN Project Coordinator











How You Can Help!

Funds donated to HOME GR/OWN will be used to support City-owned vacant lot projects which coincide with the following HOME GR/OWN objectives:

  • Increase access to local, healthy food
  • Revitalizing/engaging communities