2011-03-18 / Community

RWA Wins National Award For New Garden

By Miriam Rosenberg

The vacant lot adjacent to the firehouse on Beach 59 Street is about to get a makeover. A local group has been selected from a pool of more than 700 applicants nationwide to receive funding from a leading company which provides consumer products for the home, garden and outdoors.

The Rockaway Waterfront Alliance has been awarded the Fiskars 2011 Project Orange Thumb Garden Makeover award after the company-received submissions from all over the nation.

“RWA applied to Fiskars last year through their competition seeking nationwide submissions and is proud to have received this prestigious award,” said Jeanne DuPont, the executive director of RWA, in a recent email.

In a press release announcing the award to RWA and grants to ten other organizations across the United States and Canada, Fiskars said,Their proposed ‘Rockaway Hip Hop Community Garden’ will house educational stations and provide more than 10,000 residents that live in nearby public housing the chance to benefit from this beautified outdoor space.

A digital rendering from Billie Cohen Landscape and Sage Coombes Architects shows what the new garden at Beach 59 Street will look like. A digital rendering from Billie Cohen Landscape and Sage Coombes Architects shows what the new garden at Beach 59 Street will look like. On June 29, Fiskars will join forces with The Home Depot Foundation, volunteers and community partners to transform a 7,500-square-foot barren lot into a beautiful, productive community gathering space – in a single day.”

In addition, DuPont said the garden would be used for “outdoor activities, environmental workshops and as a meeting space for RWA programs and the local community.”

The garden makeover near the Beach 59 Street firehouse will allow RWA to make the work by landscape architect Billie Cohen a reality.

“Earlier in the year RWA received an award from Foundation for Landscape Studies which allowed them to hire landscape architect Billie Cohen to design the 5,000-square-foot outdoor space with indigenous plantings, raised flower beds, and rain barrels to capture water to be used for maintenance of the space,” said DuPont.

DuPont hopes to have involvement from every sector of Rockaway.

“Teachers, schools, civic organizations and non-profits are all welcome to come participate in the [June 29] project,” said DuPont. “RWA also intends to invite elected officials and others to take part in the day’s event, which will bring national attention to the Rockaway Peninsula.”

For more details or to volunteer your help contact the RWA at info@rwall-iance.org or go to the organization’s website at www.rwalliance.org.

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