Langley, B.C. – It’s not easy being green, especially after decades of agricultural use and construction.
But thanks to a $25,000 contribution from CN EcoConnexions From the Ground Up and its partners Tree Canada and Communities in Bloom, restoration of derelict wetlands around Logan Creek in Langley will be undertaken and led by horticulture students from Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU).
“This student-driven project is an outcome of the first graduating class in our urban ecosystems degree program, and a wonderful example of experiential learning in the classroom,” said Dr. Betty Worobec, dean of the Faculty of Science and Horticulture.
Dubbed the Logan Creek Integrity Project, the long-term goal of the initiative is to restore and redesign 1.6 hectares (four acres) of urban forest along Logan Creek. This riparian area is one of few native ecosystems to remain on campus after decades of human uses that caused a loss of fish habitat, poor drainage and frequent flooding.
“CN is pleased to be part of this effort to restore Logan Park as an upland forest that will be home to an ecosystem that nourishes vegetation native to the local region, including fruit-bearing and other edible plants traditionally used by the Kwantlen First Nation,” said Emily Hamer, regional manager, CN Public & Government Affairs. “We are all neighbours working together towards a sustainable future.”
Once the project is complete, it’s anticipated the area will support a thriving, biodiverse salmon habitat and native fruit-bearing plants traditionally used by the Kwantlen First Nation. The site will include a self-guided trail, interpretive signs in English and Hun’qumi’num dialect, and an invitation for all visitors to pick and enjoy the berries they see.
“Tree Canada is thrilled to continue to work with CN and Communities in Bloom to deliver CN EcoConnexions From the Ground Up to deserving communities such as the Kwantlen First Nation,” says Michael Rosen, president of Tree Canada. “We are pleased to support the Logan Creek restoration project in re-establishing the biodiversity of the upland forest.”
“The CN EcoConnexions From the Ground Up program provides many benefits to communities: from improving municipal landscapes, to enhancing green spaces for community activities, to providing plants for healthy living,” said Raymond Carrière, founding president of Communities in Bloom. “We are proud to work with CN and Tree Canada on such projects making our communities better places to live in, work in and to visit.”
KPU will contribute matching funds to the project and lead community engagement and participation. Elders and traditional plant educators from the Kwantlen First Nation, students in the KPU Landscape Club, Langley Environmental Partners Society and the KPU First Nation education office will all be invited to contribute to the forest in different ways. The Salvation Army Gateway of Hope will also be invited to participate in the care and harvesting of the forest.
Meanwhile, the forest will be fostered and sustained through successive academic and field course work by degree and diploma students in KPU’s School of Horticulture.
CN EcoConnexions From the Ground Up, in partnership with Tree Canada and Communities in Bloom, helps establish tree plantings in a sustainable, environmentally responsible manner in areas where CN operates.
Tree Canada is a charitable not-for-profit organization that works with corporate, government and individual partners on tree-planting programs. It provides funding for fruit-bearing trees, greening of school grounds and more.
Communities in Bloom is a Canadian non-profit organization committed to fostering civic pride, environmental responsibility and beautification with a focus on enhancing green spaces in communities.
Kwantlen Polytechnic University has been serving the Metro Vancouver region since 1981, and has opened doors to success for more than 250,000 people. Four campuses—Richmond, Surrey, Cloverdale and Langley—offer a comprehensive range of sought-after programs, including business, liberal arts, science, design, health, trades and technology, horticulture, and academic and career advancement. Over 19,000 students annually have a choice from over 124 programs, including bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees, diplomas, certificates citations and apprenticeships. Learn more at www.kpu.ca.