Ping Tom Memorial Park's 12-acre site was originally a Chicago and Western Indiana Railroad yard located along the edge of the South Branch of the Chicago River in the Armour Square Community. In 1998, the Chicago Park District began transforming the old rail-yard into a beautiful rolling green space, taking full advantage of the impressive river views. Today, Ping Tom Memorial Park holds a children's playground, community gathering areas and Chinese landscape design elements.
In June of 2013, the Chicago Park District opened a new boat house in Ping Tom Park. The boat house offers kayak rentals during the summer season and a public dock that is available for use by non-motorized boats during park hours. Restrooms are also available to the public when the boathouse vendor is operating. For details on hours of operation, please visit www.urbankayaks.com.
In 2002, the District acquired 4.98 acres from the RR (Burlington Northern / Santa Fe) north of 18th Street and west of Wentworth. Following community planning meetings it was determined that a new field house and athletic ball field would be constructed on the new acreage. In 2004 the athletic field was completed.
In October, 2013, the Ping Tom Memorial Park fieldhouse was completed and opened to the public. The fieldhouse offers the community, a multi-purpose gymnasium, 9ft. deep zero depth entry indoor swimming pool, two meeting rooms, a state-of-the-art fitness center, men's women and family locker rooms, second story outdoor patio with skyline views, green rooftop, elevator and full service kitchen. In 2015, the fieldhouse was named in honor of the late Advisory Council President Leonard Louie.