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Town leaders ante more funds for UT park project


The Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved giving an additional $4,700 for the Campbell Station Park stream buffer demonstration project at its March 13 meeting.

The original contract was for $13,806, but as the project continued, workers discovered that the funds would not be enough to complete the project.

“That project has moved along very well in the last several months,” Darryl Smith, Town engineer, said. “Everyone is very impressed with the project, it is just unfortunate that it does need additional

funding.”

The stream buffer project is led by Sam Rogers, director of The University of Tennessee Environmental Landscape Design Lab and a resident of Farragut.

“This has been a wonderful project,” Rogers said. “What we’re trying to do and the reason it’s taking some effort is that we’re taking a section of the small stream of Campbell Station Park and we’re trying to do a stream bank restoration to set a model in place that could be extended further if everyone really likes what has been done.

“What we’ve been doing is removing invasive exotic plants such as shrub honeysuckle, Oriental privet and English ivy. So those things are coming out and we’re planting natives,” he said.

“It’s not showing up a lot yet because the winter dormancy hasn’t broken. You’re going to see a lot of things out there this spring,” he added.

“A big part of this is what we call a filter strip, planting a native sedge species that will provide filtering that will be an un-mowed strip. We’re obligated to maintain that through the [first] summer,” Rogers said.

Rogers and his volunteers also will be providing an “interpretive sign” at the site. When the work is completed, Rogers plans a visual overview of the project to “see the ecological benefits, the environmental benefits of improving water quality and restoring the stream banks through Campbell Station Park.

“This is a small project but we hope it sets a good precedent that will gain support for doing something similar with the other streams,” Rogers said.

Rogers’ UT native plants class worked five afternoons, or approximately 200 volunteer service hours, at the Campbell Station Park stream to remove invasive exotic plants and plant native plants. Rogers has completed around 40 hours of pro bono work.

“We have two more afternoons of work planned with my native plants class,” Rogers said.

“We are also anticipating maybe some kind of educational workshop later on that could follow and be concurrent with this,” he added.

The extra funds will be used for additional purchases of plant materials and associated layout, spring planting days in early April and for summer care and maintenance by a part-time UT student intern.

“I think that’s fantastic,” Alderman Thomas “Tom” Rosseel said. “I really admire the work that you guys have done. I really hope that this is something that we’ll be looking at for the next five, ten years and hopefully is an example for everybody else in the Town and other places that might come and look at what could be done.”

 

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