In 1930, the City of Chicago's Bureau of Parks and Recreation recommended the creation of a public playground within three blocks of every child living in the city's congested neighborhoods. One area targeted for a small park was the Humboldt Park neighborhood, which was experiencing significant growth as numerous Italian, German, Polish, and Russian-Jewish immigrants were then settling there.
The Bureau began leasing the approximate 1/2-acre from the Board of Education and constructed a park which included playground equipment, sand boxes, a small brick recreation building, and boys' and girls' playing fields that were flooded in the winter for ice skating. Opened to the public in 1931, this site was named for the adjacent Kedvale Avenue, which was likely derived from the Native American word, ked, meaning moccasin, and the Middle English vale, meaning valley.
The Park District began managing this park in 1959. In 1991, the Board of Education transferred ownership of Kedvale Park to the Park District. Between the years 2000 and 2004 the District acquired more land for the expansion of the park, more than doubling its size. In 2006, a portion of Kedvale Street was closed to vehicular traffic to connect the park.