The second phase of REAL’s Downtown Smiths Falls Depave project was completed Saturday July 3.
Two 25 square meter pollinator gardens were planted within the space created when a block of Daniel Street between Beckwith and Emsley Streets was removed June 19. Community volunteers removed 100 m2 of asphalt by hand, and Smiths Falls staff removed the rest by machine.
Depave is a hands-on initiative to 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.
On Saturday morning, volunteers planted two pollinator gardens of native plants and shrubs following a predetermined plan. Several species of milkweed were incorporated to attract monarch butterflies. The beds were shaped June 30 and some large stones were added July 2. Many of the volunteers are from REAL’s monarch team that established two butterfly gardens on the REAL Deal site at 85 William St. W.
REAL’s Depave Team has been working closely with Art Manhire, Director of Community Services to ensure everything proceeds smoothly. The Depave project is made possible through an Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) grant, administered through Green Communities Canada (GCC), a national organization of environmental organizations like REAL.
There will be lots more activity in the Town Square space before it is complete. A band shell, funded by former REAL member Tom Foulkes will be added, along with paths, benches and lighting. REAL will be contributing four native trees to the space as one of the final steps in the Town Square design. A sign commemorating the Depave project is being prepared.
Some photos are available on REAL’s Facebook page, and a larger selection is on our Depave webpage.
See some video of our terrific volunteers in action!