District 10 Environment Committee
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Attendees: Chet Mirocha, Sally Worku, Mike MacDonald, Susan Jane Cheney
Committee Chair Mike MacDonald, called the meeting to order at
August 2010 meeting minutes were approved.
Como Lake Curbside Cleanup
The Como Lake Neighborhood Network group is conducting a curbside cleanup event, co-sponsored by The Freshwater Society and Friends of the Minnesota Valley, on Saturday, October 16, and have requested Environment Committee assistance with public awareness activities, a literature drop, as well as the actual leaf-bagging, bag pickup and delivery to the compost site. A thank you celebration in the park will follow the event. Mike has contacted District 10 regarding notice of the event in the newsletter, on the website, and in an e-blast. He will send out an e-mail regarding specific volunteer opportunities for Committee members.
Tree tagging project
Mike and Chet Mirocha are preparing for a presentation to the City Council to request a variance to the City ordinance banning attachment of anything to trees on park property. Chet has written the justification for tree identification tags to the trees in Como Park, and Mike is working on a map showing tree locations.
Discussion of winter activities
Committee members present proposed that winter activities focus on preparation for spring and summer events, including:
The April Parks Cleanup
A tree trek and historical tours
The annual Como birding event
The Como Woodland Outdoor Classroom (CWOC) Kilmer Fireplace Rededication; Woodland garlic mustard and burdock pulls; and any other CWOC activities
A summer garden tour
Mike will check on park buckthorn removal plans and also will consult with Betti Iwanski regarding plans for energy conservation activities.
Capitol Region Watershed District (CRWD)
Citizen Advisory Committee member Mike MacDonald reported on CRWD activities:
A new program called “Stop the Rain Drain” is designed to promote stormwater infiltration by redirecting garage gutter downspouts from alleyways into yards . Grants providing up to $90.00 for materials per garage are available through the CRWD; labor may be performed by homeowners or the MN Conservation Corps. Program pilot areas are not within District 10.
New raingarden signage is being installed at the infiltration garden at Arlington and Hamline Avenues.
Two larger pumps and bigger pipes are being installed at Gottsfried Pitt on Larpenteur Avenue to allieviate flooding in that area during heavy rains.
The new infiltration garden at the intersection of East Como Blvd. and Victoria Avenue is retaining water for too long following rains. The City and CRWD are investigating the problem and will plan for remediation.
The Como Pool site exceeds 1 acre, and, consequently, St. Paul has applied for a CRWD permit for managing stormwater. Raingardens are a likely solution.
For more information, check the CRWD website (www.capitolregionwd.org).
Como Woodland Outdoor Classroom (CWOC)
Susan Jane Cheney gave a brief report on the most recent Woodland Advisory Committee meeting, held on 8/23/10. Discussion focused on:
Como Park transportation planning and repercussions for the CWOC;
The CWOC application process for the DNR School Forest designation and procedures for coordinating local schools’ visits to the site;
The Joyce Kilmer Memorial Fireplace rededication event (scheduled for 5/19/11) and related Poet-Tree workshops taking place this fall;
Upcoming woodland events, including burdock “busts” and a digital photography workshop; the Fall Field Day usually held in September has been cancelled this year.
Visit the CWOC website (www.comowoodland.org) for additional information.
The meeting adjourned at about
[Meeting summary prepared by Susan Jane Cheney]