Exchange Street Playground Improvements

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Project Background 


The Exchange Street Playground is City Park on the site of the former Genesee Valley Canal in the Plymouth-Exchange Neighborhood (PLEX). After the Canal was abandoned in 1878, the site became a portion of the Genesee Valley Canal Railroad – which had multiple tracks onsite until the railway was abandoned in 1963. The current park was constructed in the 1970s and hasn’t seen major updates since, aside from playground equipment upgrades over the years.

In 2015, a master plan for this park was completed with a grant from the Community Design Center of Rochester. The Master Plan included a partnership with the PLEX neighborhood group, in order to include public feedback in the preferred design alternatives. This Master Plan identified a phased final concept plan that can be found in the attachment below.

 2 - PLEX Master Plan Cover  3 - PLEX MP Phase 1

 *Download the 2015 Master Plan here.  

The City secured a grant through the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY) for design and construction of Phase 1 improvements to the park. A design consultant was solicited via an RFP process, and preliminary data collection and conceptual design began in Summer 2022.

Project Objectives

The City of Rochester is presently working with a consultant team to design the Phase 1 conceptual improvements that were shown in the 2015 master plan. When additional funding becomes available, the City will pursue the other phases which include significant park amenities.

Public Input

Public engagement and feedback for understanding the needs and visions of the community as they relate to the project will be implemented through stakeholder meetings, public meetings, in-person and online surveys, and project updates on the City’s website.

The City met with the PLEX Neighborhood Group virtually on 8/16/22 and in person 10/16/22 in a charrette style meeting to allow PLEX to voice their opinion on the design concepts. Minutes of the 10/16 meeting can be found in the documents section below.

The first public meeting to discuss design concepts was held on 12/14/22 at 6pm in the Carlson Commons. Minutes of the 12/14 meeting can be found in the documents section below.

Project Schedule – Phase 1 Improvements 

  • Winter 2022-23: Design trail and park improvements
  • Late Fall 2023: Publicly bid
  • Spring 2024: Begin construction on Phase 1
  • Fall 2024: Complete construction on Phase 1 

Schedule is subject to adjustments

Project Funding and Attributions

Design and construction documents for the park improvements are prepared with funds provided by the City of Rochester, DASNY, and RG&E. RG&E notified the city in April 2023 that they will contribute up to $141,833 towards design and construction of lighting features.

city logo  DASNY Logo  RGE Logo

Project Documents

Key files from the stakeholder and public information meetings will be uploaded to the project website shortly after they area held.



If you have questions or comments about the Exchange Street Playground improvements, please contact Tyler Burke in the City’s Bureau of Architecture and Engineering at 428-7571, or by email.