Restoration of Panther Hollow Makes Huge Progress With $1 Million Grant
Wednesday, September 08, 2010
The Richard King Mellon Foundation recently awarded a $1 million grant to the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy to create a management plan for Panther Hollow watershed. Panther Hollow, located in Schenley Park, has long been plagued by pollution and invasive species, and the grant will be a huge boost in the effort to restore the important body of water, which once featured a boathouse, and was a popular destination for families.
“We’ll use professionals, and we will bring in consultants to help us create a longterm management plan that will create permanent change,” says Michael Sexauer, director of marketing and membership for the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy.
The first thing the plan needs to address is educating the public about runoff from the hillsides. “One of our biggest challenges is education of the residents who surround Schenley Park, and pressing on them the importance of being aware of how their lifestyle choices impact Panther Hollow watershed,” says Sexauer.
Another considerable challenge, which the plan will address, is the replacement of harmful invasive species with plants that will bring stability to Panther Hollow’s ecosystem. Additionally, the grant will allow the Parks Conservancy to continue the work they’ve been doing for years, such as installing catch basins and removing debris.
On September 15, the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy will present “What’s in the Panther Hollow?”, a public meeting to address the problems and solutions. Parks Conservancy staff will provide an overview of the Panther Hollow issues, and guest speaker Michele Adams, principal engineer and founder of Meliora Design, will lecture on the importance of sustainable resources engineering and environmentally sensitive site design.
The event is free, and will be located in Botany Hall, adjacent to Phipps Conservatory. Seating is limited, and attendees should RSVP by September 13 through email, or by calling 412-682-7275.
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Source: Michael Sexauer, director of marketing and membership for the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
Writer: John Farley