Environmental Stewardship CITF Grant Program
During the 2005-06 academic years Student Government directed the use of $500,000 to environmental stewardship of the University’s Conservation Areas . This funding coincided with the University’s completion of management plans for all of the University Conservation Areas, in conjunction with the 2005 update of the Master Plan . In these management plans, a working group identified various activities that should be undertaken to identify and improve each area.
The following activities were identified by the working group and formed the basis of the CITF Environmental Stewardship request:
- Uniform campus wide signage to increases public awareness and stewardship of natural features such as creeks and wetlands
- The installation of attractive fencing along allconservation areas adjacent to roads for the purpose of discouraging trespass and trapping trash that blows from the roadway into the natural areas. Also included is boundary fencing to establish the limits of Conservation Areas and identify certain management practices such as no parking and no mowing
- Information Kiosks installed in all natural areas. Some areas currently have information kiosks, but a significant number remain to be installed. This will also be beneficial towards increasing public awareness and stewardship as well as provide general information of the identified areas
- Expanded natural area teaching resources and facilities
In 2006, a committee, CITF – Environmental Stewardship Committee, was formed to allocate where the funds should be spent based on the initial request. This committee was made up of students, faculty and staff - Dan Boda, Eric Penkert, Margaret Carr, Dr. Lisa Hall, Dr. Gerald Kidder, Fred Cantrell, Jodi Chase, and Erick Smith. This committee allocated the following amounts:
- $100, 000 for the completion of a nature trail and board walk at the Natural Areas Teaching Laboratory on the southwest corner of the main campus.
- $200,000 for fencing and signage on Conservation Areas.
- $200,000 for a grant program to allow students, faculty and staff to submit projects that will benefit Conservation Areas.
The University’s Lakes and Natural Areas Subcommittee, a subcommittee of the Lakes, Vegetation and Landscaping, awarded 6 grants for projects that benefit the University’s Conservation Areas.
- The UF Environmental and Land Use Law Society received a grant for restoration, invasive plant removal and physical improvements to the DASH Course/Law School Woods.
- The UF Agronomy and Soils Club received a grant for restoration efforts directed to McCarty Woods.
- The UF Student Chapter of the American Water Resources Association received a grant for restoration efforts on Health Center Creek/Cal’s Canal.
- An Ad-Hoc working group of wetlands ecology students received a grant for efforts to establish native vegetation and floating islands in the ephemeral wetlands of Solar Park Pond – East.
- The Natural Areas Teaching Lab received a grant for a storage shed and mower that was needed to secure management equipment and to maintain trails.
- Claire Rittschof, Zoology, was awarded a grant for materials placed in two existing kiosks. However, since Facilities,Planning and Construction printed the materials, there was no realized cost for this grant.
Please follow this link to see photos and descriptions of the volunteers and their work projects.
Other Projects that were funded by the remaining CITF funds are listed below.
CITF Projects to be implemented by Physical Plant Department’s Grounds Section
- Law School Woods/DASH – Specimen Trees and Shrubs –Budget Allocation
- Health Center Creek – tree & shrub planting
- McCarty Woods – Flowering tree plantings along edges
- Graham Pond - dredging, planting and rebuild deck
- 4 Information Kiosks - McCarty Woods, Dash Course(LSW), Bartram-Carr Woods(HCC), Solar Park Pond-East
- Invasive Plant Retreatment – Hire a Contractor to retreat areas that have been previously treated for invasive exotic plants. Areas included but not limited to –Bartram-Carr Woods, McCarty Woods, Reitz Ravines Woods, Harmonic Woods and Lake Alice Wetlands.
- New permeable, rubber, bike trail in Bartram Carr Woods from Psych. Bldg. to HSC Park & Carr Hall and/or boardwalk/bridge/ across intermittent creek next to Psychology. Also, rebuild pavilion or add new one in Health Center Park area-
- Boardwalk Trail in Creek Conservation Area (HCC) from Particle Science parking lot to Center Drive
- President’s Park, Bartram-Carr Woods/Reitz Ravine/McCarty Woods/Law School Woods\Harmonic Woods Restoration: Specimen flowering tree plantings, mulch trails and close footpaths.
- Invasive plant treatment and replanting with natives for President’s Park and Graham Woods.