Landscape Architecture Inc has been involved in a St. Anthony Park (St. Paul, MN) community based environmental improvement project since 2006. After a lot of hard work (and volunteer time by our staff) we are so excited to now appreciate the one acre of park land that was previously surfaced street space. The addition of rain gardens in our design has lifted the firm's neighborhood quality of life and ecology. Prior to this wonderful project taking place, the stormwater from this project area was piped directly into the Mississippi with no pretreatment or opportunity to infiltrate back into the earth.
From St. Anthony Park Community Council:
St. Anthony Park resident and SAPCC Environment Committee member Stephen Mastey recently spearheaded an initiative to install 16 new rain gardens containing more than 1,600 pollinator-friendly plants along Raymond Avenue.
Planting the New Raymond Avenue: Volunteer Initiative Sews Lasting Results
By Kyle Mianulli, SAPCC communications coordinator
When it comes to improving the beauty and environmental friendliness of our neighborhood, there's no better way to get things done and done in the right way than through the power and initiative of those who live here.
That's a notion resident and St. Anthony Park Community Council Environment Committee member Stephen Mastey understands well. He recently spearheaded an enormous neighborhood environmental initiative to beautify and improve the environmental friendliness of one of the neighborhood's busiest routes.
He, along with a group of 8 other St. Anthony Park residents worked sun up to sun down over three days in August to weed, cultivate and plant 16 rain gardens with more than 1,600 pollinator-friendly plants along Raymond Avenue between Hampden and Ellis Aves.
"We've eliminated one acre of hardcover or impervious and converted it to green space....and then on top of that we've added 16 rain gardens. It's just a huge water quality improvement initiative," Mastey says.
Purple Pavement Shrub Rose's are one of the pollinator-friendly plants in the 16 rain gardens.>>
Quick to recognize an opportunity, Mastey advocated for the inclusion of improved green space and the addition of rain gardens to the city's early plans for the reconstruction of Raymond Avenue. Like many things in city planning, this was no simple task, but through the sustained work of Mastey and the rest of the SAPCC environment committee, plans were eventually amended to replace one acre of impervious ground cover with new green space that included an expansion of Hampden Park (along with a new underground storm water system) and 16 new rain gardens.
A landscape architect by trade, Mastey took the plans a step further for the environment and ensured every plant that was to be included in the rain gardens would also provide pollinator insects like bees and butterflies with a steady source of pollen throughout the season.
"One of the things we really looked at in addition to beautification and civic value, was wildlife and specifically pollinators," Mastey says. "Every plant that we planted is a huge pollinator plant."
It's not just insects that will enjoy the new plantings, either. Mastey says pheasants and wild turkeys are known to eat the rose-hips and 38 different species of neotropical migrant songbirds enjoy the Service Berries.
From TC Daily Planet:
When it comes to improving the beauty and environmental friendliness of any neighborhood, there’s no better way to get things done and done in the right way than through the power and initiative of those who live there.
That’s a notion St. Anthony Park resident and Stephen Mastey understands well. He recently spearheaded an enormous neighborhood environmental initiative to beautify and improve the environmental friendliness of one of St. Anthony Park’s most vital routes in St. Paul.