Ridding Riddell of Pavement

Depave Paradise projects engage volunteers and neighbourhoods in communities across Canada, removing pavement and planting gardens filled with native species in its place. Hard surfaces, such as driveways, parking lots and buildings, interrupt the natural water cycle by preventing rain water from soaking into the ground. This in turn leads to flooding, poor water quality, and creates urban heat islands that are warming up our cities. By removing pavement and replacing it with green space, we are increasing the infiltration rate of rain water, cooling our neighbourhoods, keeping our water clean, and providing us and our children with greater connections to the natural world.

On May 28th and June 4th, we helped R.A. Riddell Elementary School, partners and local residents host Hamilton’s 3rd Depave Paradise event to transform part of the school’s asphalt playground into a beautiful garden – and it was a great success!

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On Saturday, May 28th, volunteers showed up at the school in over 30 degree weather (!!!) to help rip up the asphalt from the school’s playground. We worked with Fern Ridge Landscaping and Eco-Consulting to make the school’s vision a reality and they were busy from May 30th – June 2nd preparing the new garden space and installing permeable pathways. On Saturday, June 4th, volunteers headed back to the school to plant a new garden in the de-paved space.

Funding and support for this project has been provided by the Green Communities Canada,  the Ontario Trillium Foundation, RBC Blue Water Project, Intact Financial Corporation, Fern Ridge Landscaping and Eco-Consulting, HWDSB Foundation, EcoSpark, and the Small Change Fund.


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