REAL is excited to announce that our first Depave Paradise project has been confirmed. REAL will be organizing volunteers to participate in the removal of Daniel Street in front of the Smiths Falls Public Library and will plant a monarch garden within that space.
Depave projects are hands-on initiatives that demonstrate how communities can create green spaces to divert water from our sewer systems and allow it to filter into the soil before entering our waterways, keeping our water cleaner. Revegetating the site not only beautifies the space, but provides shade, cooling and habitat for birds, pollinators an animals. Our Depave project is supported by Green Communities Canada, and funded through the Ontario Trillium Foundation and donations from Tom Foulkes.
REAL is pleased that this Depave project is coinciding with the Town of Smiths Falls development of a Town Square between the town hall and the Smiths Falls Public Library. Central to the greenspace will be a bandstand funded by Tom Foulkes, a former REAL member, past President of the Friends of the Library, and enthusiastic community supporter, who passed away last December. REAL had earmarked some contributions from Tom to do a rain garden somewhere in Smiths Falls, and feel that contributing to this greenspace will be a lasting tribute to Tom and his wife Pat. Monarch Way Station status will be pursued for the garden, as REAL has successfully done for the monarch garden planted on the REAL Deal site at 85 William St. W.
This will be a great opportunity for community members to contribute to a new look to our downtown. Volunteers will take part in the pavement removal and planting on two separate days. Volunteers will work in 1.5 hours shifts and there will be strict health and safety requirements and COVID precautions in place. The tentative depave date of Sat. May 15 has been abandoned due to Ontario’s Stay at Home order, and will be set once we know it is safe to do so. We are still hoping that June 12 will be our planting day. Katie Hoffman will be in charge of volunteer recruitment and scheduling, as volunteers must preregister.
Watch our website, Facebook and local media for updates as we approach Depave day.
Read Evelyn Harford story in Inside Ottawa Valley April 14, 2021.
See a Cogeco interview with Kathy Botham about the project.
Liste to Bob Perreault’s interview with Barb Hicks on Lake 88’s In Focus program.