Von Neida Park is Cramer’s Hill’s largest park and and a city-wide gathering place. Unfortunately, it suffers from frequent flooding, illicit activities, and disrepair. In the 2009 Cramer Hill NOW! Neighborhood Plan, Cramer Hill residents ranked the flooding of Von Neida Park as their primary concern. The Von Neida Park Project aims to alleviate the flooding which directly impacts the quality of life of Cramer Hill residents.
In 2001, in response to the widespread concern among Cramer Hill residents, the Cramer Hill Community Development Corporation (CHCDC) commissioned a study to investigate the causes and solutions to the severe flooding in Von Neida Park. The study concluded that the frequent flooding was caused by inadequate capacity of the combined sewer system and the low ground elevations of the area. With the results of the study, CFDA, in partnership with the City of Camden, Camden County, and CHCDC, secured $1.3 million to complete the Von Neida Park Stormwater Management & Park Improvement Project. Funded by the USEPA and NJDEP Green Acres Program, the project will mitigate flooding by constructing improvements to the underground drainage infrastructure, as well as developing a surface stormwater management strategy. Additionally, the project will improve the quality and safety of the park by adding additional recreational amenities.
In 2009, CFP partnered with Rowan University's Engineering Department to better understand the stormwater flooding in Von Neida Park. A team started working in March 2009 to evaluate storm water management concerns by using a state-of-the art virtual reality system, the Rowan University Cave Automatic Virtual Environment, known as a CAVE®. The CAVE is a 100-cubic-foot, fully immersive, navigable and interactive virtual reality system in which Rowan Engineering teams have conducted research for the United States Navy and NASA. Original funding for the CAVE came from the National Science Foundation.