Town celebrates new educational pocket park

On Thursday, Oct. 19, First Selectman Michael Tetreau cut the ribbon for ceremonies celebrating the new educational pocket park created by the Greater Fairfield Board of Realtors® , the Mill River Wetlands Committee and Sleepy Hollow Landscaping and Design. The new park is located in the Stratfield section of Fairfield, at the intersection of Rockland Road and Wilson Street.

“We created this space to educate how to use native plantings; ones which absorb water, rather than grass, invasive plant species and pavement, which cause flooding and erosion within our waterways,” said Stephanie Barnes, GFBOR president. Barnes further commented, “It was on a field trip with my son that I first saw a demonstration by the Mill River Wetlands. Native plantings slow water absorption back down into the ground, therefore, replenishing our aquifers. Invasive species kill off native plants, and water runs off of grass into the road and into our streams and rivers at such a fast speed that it creates massive flooding and the erosion of the riverbanks. This educational project shows how to utilize native species, how to not use grass, how to create a healthy habitat for pollinators and birds, and how to slow the absorption of water back into our groundwater.”

The GFBOR received a $4,500 Placemaking grant from the National Association of Realtors® to help make Fairfield a better place to live by transforming an unused space where friends and neighbors can come together. Thanks to the Placemaking Committee of Michael Traum, Kristen DeLaurentiis and Jennifer DeLaurentis, this successful placemaking project is now a reality. “This was not an easy project, but well worth it. The time, commitment and level of skill for which this team demonstrated is invaluable to our board and to our community — they are a highly skilled and talented group of Realtors, and we are so grateful for all of their hard work, passion and dedication.”

“Realtors® live, work and volunteer in their communities and take immense pride in working to improve them,” said Barnes, “Placemaking can help foster healthier, more social and economically viable communities. It creates places where people feel a strong stake in their neighborhoods and are committed to making things better. As the area becomes more attractive and welcoming, nearby properties may also increase in value. We are very grateful to our GFBOR committee, Michael Traum, Kristen DeLaurentiis and Jennifer DeLaurentis for their work with this project and to the Mill River Wetlands Committee, Sleepy Hollow Landscaping and the Town of Fairfield.”

Ribbon cutting ceremony for Rockland Road Park.

Ribbon cutting ceremony for Rockland Road Park.

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