City Floor Supply recently took part in an amazing project to renovate the gym floor at the Harrowgate Police Athletic League (PAL) in North Philadelphia. The Harrowgate PAL is an important resource which provides a number of activities for local children. About 150 children use its facilities every day, with a total of 1,600 children registered for the league’s services.
But this wasn’t always the case––the Harrowgate PAL is the result of many people coming together to realize a vision for their community.
The recreation center was formerly operated by the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Department and went underused for a number of years. In 2011, Councilwoman Maria Quiñones-Sánchez and the Building Owners and Managers Association paired up to reopen the space as the Harrowgate PAL.
Once it opened, the PAL center provided a great place for local children to visit after school and during the summer. The league began offering field trips, performing arts programs, sports leagues, computer classes, and many other activities.
However, Officer Frank Rivera, Director of the Harrowgate PAL, noticed that the linoleum flooring on the basketball court was falling apart with use. The tiles were coming up, the flooring was dated, and it just didn’t provide the feel of a true basketball court.
In 2013, Officer Rivera got in touch with Councilwoman Maria Quiñones-Sánchez to discuss installing a new gym floor. The Councilwoman was able to secure wood flooring for the project.
As the new project gained momentum, Officer Rivera also reached out Ron Kromer, Floor Layer Instructor for the Carpenters Joint Apprenticeship Committee of Philadelphia and Vicinity, who agreed to donate the labor to install a new gym floor. Ron in turn reached out to Frank Dove of Dovlin Enterprises, who provided a group of sand and finish installers to work on the project.
Ron also contacted City Floor Supply’s East Territory Sales Manager Fred Beach, who volunteered his time to aid in the coordination and execution of the project. City Floor Supply also donated cleats and materials for the maintenance of the floor, and we reached out to Bona-Kemi, who generously provided the center with their top-of-the line CourtLines paint, finish, and sealer.
The volunteer team proceeded to give the gym floor a complete renovation. They installed and sanded the floor, painted full-sized basketball and volleyball court lines, painted a fresh PAL logo at
half-court, and finished the floor.
Within a week of the project start, the PAL team was able to introduce the neighborhood kids to their new gym. It now provides a great space for local children to spend their time playing sports, complete with the beautiful glossiness and bounce of a maple wood floor.
The City Floor team is so grateful to have been a part of this project. “To see the police working within the community to build mutually beneficial relationships with the local kids, parents, and volunteers is truly inspiring,” said Mike Glavin.
This was truly an amazing example of people generously coming together to pool their resources, knowledge, and time in order to benefit their community.