TROY - A $5,000 grant from the Choctawhatchee, Pea and Yellow Rivers Watershed Management Authority will help Troy University continue to fight invasive species of plants and help build walking trails in the Janice Hawkins Cultural Arts Park.
The grant was presented Nov. 28 to TROY Chancellor Dr. Jack Hawkins Jr. by Authority Board member Randy Hale, Authority Board Chairman and Enterprise Mayor Kenneth Boswell, and Authority Executive Director Barbara Gibson.
Mark Salmon, Director of the University's Physical Plant, said TROY is grateful for the continued support of the Authority, and that work will continue on the improvement of the area south of the new amphitheater.
The University and the Authority have cooperated on various projects in the area, considered wetlands, since 2008 and have combated such invasive plant species as kudzu, Chinese privet and "popcorn" trees. Now much of that focus will shift to the construction of an additional 1,500 feet of walking trails using natural materials such as hardwood mulch and timbers to provide trail tread and structure. This second phase of trail construction will expand the University's outdoor ecological classroom within the park.
"We appreciate the Authority's continued support of the Janice Hawkins Park project, and it allows us to make a very positive impact on the usability and sustainability of our space on campus," Salmon said.
The park's master plan includes stream restoration and green infrastructure to encourage water quality and provide access to the natural areas of the park, he said.