ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — State and local leaders are celebrating the first step towards construction of the new Frederick Douglass Memorial Plaza in Highland Park.

Ground was broken late Thursday afternoon for the new site honoring the abolitionist. Douglass lived in Rochester for more than 25 years. He had homes on Alexander Street and South Avenue.

The plaza will be the home of the relocated Frederick Douglass monument statue. The county was able to relocate the statue thanks to grants from New York State.

Many say moving the statue to a more accessible place will help inspire those in the community.

“It’s about putting it in a place that is more prominent and visible for all to see, all to understand, and all to learn from this wonderful man, Douglass the freedom seeker and liberator for all people,” said Assemblymember Harry Bronson.

Construction for the new plaza is scheduled to begin in late August with the goal of having it finished in the fall.