NY landfill parks could be open to the public next spring

New York’s two landfill parks at Fountain Avenue and Pennsylvania Avenue could be reclassified as safe for public access by next spring according to a spokesperson from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. The parks are currently closed as they are classified as a “significant threat to the public health or environment”.

The parks have undergone a transformation since 2004 when the first seeds were planted on the safety soil cap of the two landfill sites which were closed in 1985. Leslie Sauer, a founder of Andropogon Associates divided the parks into islands of different ecological niches with plantings representing different areas of the region with up 93% of the planting surviving.

The local residents envision various activities in the sites such as bicycle riding, performances in an amphitheater and fishing. The project has cost $200 million including the capping and planting of 33,000 shrubs and trees.

Information SOURCE: New York Times

5,000 shared bikes for High-Tech Park in Shanghai

ZHANGJIANG High-Tech Park in Shanghai plans to make 5,000 rental bikes available by early-2010 to help workers in the park travel between the Metro Station and offices. The 150 bike rental stations will be positioned every 300 meters in the 25 square kilometer area. The project is to stated in October 2008 with 2 rental stations and 20 bikes now the park has 600 bikes with 50 stations. The bikes are free for the first half hour and then 1 to 3 yuan (15 to 45 US cents) per hour for more time.

SOURCE: Shanghai Daily  – High-tech park embraces low-tech transport

Planting the landscape from 400 years ago

A stylised native woodland is being planted at Schwartz Plaza at New York University by George Reis, N.Y.U.’s supervisor of sustainable landscapes. The Manhatta project inspired Reis to propose the landscape using plants from before settlement of Manhattan. The design was completed by Darrell Morrison after Reis won the funds from the class of 2008 legacy fund. Recently  Reis and Morrison, along with the help of some students, began planting 2,000 plants that were all thriving on Manhattan from the 1600′s.

SOURCE: New York Times

England to recover 2000 hectares of wetland

Natural England(independent public body) has committed £4million of funding to recover close to 2000 hectares of wetland. The funds will be distributed to organisatons such as the Wildlife Trusts and RSPB who will work with the Environment Agency and English Heritage to manage re-wetting the land.

Dr Helen Phillips, Chief Executive for Natural England: said: “It may be hard to imagine, but England was once a much wetter place than it is today. Around 90 percent of the soft and squelchy bogs and marshes have been lost over the last 1000 years. Healthy wetlands are a unique and vital habitat for wildlife and provide fantastic places for people to visit.

Wetland projects to receive funding over the next two years include the East Anglian fens, Humberhead Levels, Midlands Meres and Mosses, Morecambe Bay Wetlands, the Somerset Levels and the River Till in Northumberland*

SOURCE: Natural England

Drought blamed for dead trees in Texas

Currently the drought is continuing in Texas and as a result hundreds of Austin’s 300,000 trees have died this summer due to drought. Native species such as live oak and hackberry have perished due to drought and an intense summer. Currently Austin is cutting down the dead city trees and making them into mulch for use on other trees.  Residents are being advised to soak trees with 5 gallons of water per week for every inch of tree trunk caliper.

SOURCE: Dallas News.com – Drought blamed for dead trees in Texas

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