Greening Lea Master Plan Presented!

The Greening Lea Master Plan Presentation on Wednesday, January 9th was a great success with over 70 people attending!

The evening began with an introduction by WPCNS and Greening Lea members: Amara Rockar, WPCNS Board President; Maurice Jones, Lea Home, School and Community Association President; Jennifer Martel, Greening Lea Committee; and Julie Scott, Greening Lea Committee.  They shared recent past projects of WPCNS and Greening Lea including the new raised beds in the Muhammed Ali secret garden and the November Greening pilot planting project.  Members also described the process of developing the master plan, as well as the next steps needed to make the project a reality.

The Collaborative team leader, David Ade, Principal at SMP Architects, presented the process of the Community Design Collaborative service grant.  He explained how their team gathered information through site visits, community meetings, and research of similar projects.  Suzanna Fabry from Viridian Landscape Studio walked the audience through the proposed design of the green schoolyard.  Key parts of the plan include: (1) establishing the school yard as the new primary entrance with design elements to reinforce the identity of the school; (2) the creation of a series of outdoor “rooms” and play areas, including the ever-popular basketball court; (3) developing edges to address storm water; and (4) relocating the dumpster to the north yard to create an area for recycling and compost.

Attendees asked questions on a variety of issues: school district support for the project, maintenance, security issues at secret garden, and others.   The CDC team, WPCNS, and Greening Lea members answered the questions.  The school district has seen the plan and is supportive of the project, but they don’t have the budget to cover a project like this.  They lent labor support to the fall planting project, helping us dig up the asphalt and installing a new hose bibb, and we hope they will be able to support future phases of the project.  Fundraising and grant efforts were discussed. The team has applied for a number of grants already – Bennett, Barra, PECO, and GreenBuild Legacy Project – and have identified some for the near future – Claneil and SMIP grant from PWD.  A fundraising committee will be starting up and attendees were encouraged to get involved.

The night was a great first step towards the next stage of the process!  Next immediate steps are fundraising, but there are many ways for people to get involved to make this project a reality.  If you are interested in getting involved in any way, please complete this BRIEF survey: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Z7853Z3 or email contactwpcns@gmail.com.

The Greening Lea Master Plan PowerPoint Presentation is available for download here and an abridged version of the Greening Lea Master Plan can be downloaded here.

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