(Camden, New Jersey) Sixty Camden children filled the tents at Cooper Commons Park at what will become the new “community living room” for the Cooper Plaza neighborhood. Community partners, including representatives from Cooper University Hospital, Camden County, the City of Camden, Cooper Lanning Civic Association, The Reinvestment Fund, and local elected officials, dug the first hole in the park which is scheduled to be completed in summer 2009. “The Cooper University Hospital Board of Trustees made a commitment to create a Health Sciences Campus and Neighborhood,” said George E. Norcross, III, Cooper Board Chairman. “We said that this neighborhood deserved not only excellent health services and access to good jobs, but also safe streets, greenery and trees, nice sidewalks, quality housing opportunities - and places for kids to play and for senior citizens to stroll on a nice Fall day. With the support of our community partnerships, we are seeing the results of this commitment to the city.”
(Camden, New Jersey) Today, Cooper University Hospital and Saint Joseph’s Carpenter Society celebrated their partnership to rebuild the Cooper Plaza neighborhood. Six houses in the 600 block of Benson Street, immediately across the street from the Cooper University Hospital emergency room, have been rehabilitated and will be sold to families. In October 2006, Cooper sold 600, 602, 604, 608, 612, and 614 Benson Street to Saint Joseph’s Carpenter Society for $206,000 less than the appraised value. All units were vacant and in various states of disrepair. Since that time, St. Joseph’s Carpenter Society, has transformed these historic Victorian-era homes and given a new, vibrant face to this rapidly-revitalizing neighborhood.