Master Plan and General Grounds Improvements Update: Report on the Parks and Recreation Board and Environmental Board Joint Committee Meeting
by Gary Beyer
On Monday, February 6, the City of Austin provided a status update on the General Grounds Improvement Project, Barton Springs trees, and the Master Plan Short-Termed Projects. The General Grounds Improvement Project continues toward its start date of fall of this year. Great News! The number of trails has been reduced so that now the original trail from the south gate to the diving board has been eliminated. This will allow for the infilling of the gully and restoration of the critical root zone of the large pecan tree nearby. All direct traffic to the diving board beach will be through the area known as the South Woods, an area formerly located outside the fence. The trail through the South Woods will be ADA accessible. There will be another ADA trail from the south gate to the memorial area, but it has been changed from concrete to decayed granite. These improvements will reduce the impervious cover and will not detract from the natural, open aesthetic uncluttered with lots of manmade distractions.
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Feeling cramped up from this long harsh 70-degree winter? Tired of wearing not one but two layers of light clothing? Well my friends you are in luck, because this upcoming March 3rd is none other than the Friends of Barton Springs Pool “Spring Cleaning,” where we guarantee you that spring feeling. Each year after the Texas winter subsides we recruit all of you wonderful volunteers to come out to the pool and literally spring clean.
As part of the It’s My Park Day event the FBSP organization likes to open up the year strong and big with the cleaning that readies the pool for the summer masses. We plant flowers, sweep rocks (that are under the water), garden, scrub railings, paint things, remove harmful algae, and much much more. We like to think that we make the springs a better place for swimmers and the natural habitat that live there year round. So come on out and join us for this years It’s My Park Day and Friends of Barton Springs Pool spring cleaning extravaganza.
Date: Saturday March 3rd 2012
Time: 9:00am – 1:00pm
Where: Barton Springs Pool (main entrance)
Service Director of FBSP
Friends of Barton Springs Pool (FBSP) has joined Hill Country Conservancy (HCC) and four other not-for-profit groups in Austin on the third annual Give 5% to Mother Earth Day. Donations go to organizations which advocate for natural spaces, parks, and for our local water environment. It is a simple concept – on April 21st, simply use your purchasing power and support local businesses who will then give 5% of their gross profits (or more) to help organizations with cool missions but that rely on volunteer donations. This year, the HCC is hoping to increase donated funds from businesses to $35,000 compared to 2011’s $23,000. The FBSP will seek 15 businesses and already we have four willing to sponsor us. After February, the businesses will all be listed at www.austingive5.com.
- Title sponsor Whole Foods Market is contributing $10,000 and dedicating April 18 for the entire day to promote the Earth Day event on April 21. At both stores on Lamar/6th and Loop 360 near Stone Lake. Volunteers will set up tables to promote the event and there will be live music. We will definitely reach a lot of people who will then come out on the 21st!
- Tribeza will advertise each 5% or above business supporting the event, an ad placement worth more than the donation given by a business.
- Street banners will be placed across W 6th St and Mesa/Far West to promote the event for several days.
- Volunteers will be the Sunset Valley Farmers Market for 6 Saturdays in a roll to promote the supporting businesses and the 5% Earth Day event. The Friends will be there on March 31.
- Each of the 6 participating volunteer organizations will use direct mailings, social media messages, and blogs to further publicize the event.
- Each business is recognized on post cards distributed at the business to remind customers to come back.
- The 5% Day website will include links to each businesses’ website. Go to www.austingive5.com and check on supporting businesses and events
FBSP is very excited about the synergy volunteers from our organization, from HCC, Sierra Club, Clean Water Action, TreeFolks, and Texas Land Conservancy might accomplish this year. We are equally excited to work with so many locally-based businesses who do so much to make Austin the unique place it is.