Free City street tree program back - applications due March 16

At no cost to residents of Colorado Springs, the City Forestry Division is utilizing Tree City USA funds to provide a 2012 street tree planting program. Applications are first come first serve and due by Friday, March 16, 2012, click here to download. When the trees arrive, residents are required to pick up, plant and water their own trees (though once established most of these trees will be low-water use and drought tolerant). Available trees include: Tatarian “hot wings” Maple, “Radiant” Crabapple*, Coralburst Crabapple*, Aristocrat Pear*, “China Snow” Tree Lilac, Glenleven Linden, Harvest Gold Linden, Horsechestnut, Hackberry, Kentucky Coffeetree, Northern Catalpa (pictured), Chinkapin Oak, Swamp White Oak, Bur Oak, English Oak and Northern Red Oak. (*Smaller trees suitable for planting in small spaces or under powerlines.)  You probably know that trees provide us with beautiful landscapes, can camouflage unsightly views, provide privacy and increase property values, but did you know that they also...

A verdant future with through Greener Corners recycling

Greener Corners and School District 11 have partnered to create a program to further green efforts in the Colorado Springs community and support student achievement through shared time and resources. A pilot project is underway at Palmer High School under the direction of principal Laura Disney, and teacher Erica Rewey who supervises the school’s Eco Club. To date, Palmer students have attended an interactive Greener Corners sustainability workshop/pizza party and participated in educating event-goers alongside Greener Corners at the Festival of Lights Parade. Upcoming in February is a speed networking event designed to facilitate opportunities for students with relevant organizations and businesses for career planning. According LouAnn Dekleva, Community PartnershipsSupervisor, the project creates opportunities for Palmer High School students to apply what they learn in the classroom to hands-on experiences in the community as it relates to environmental and sustainability issues. The Greener Corners program is made possible by the advertising sponsors. To advertise with Greener Corners, contact Madeleine Mellini at 719-578-3333 or madeleine.mellini@greenercorners.com.

Want innovation and sustainability from your municipal government? There's a team for that!

The City’s Innovation and Sustainability Team is focused on promoting the spirit of innovation in the organization and facilitating the financial and environmental sustainability of the City. To be sustainable, innovations must support the citizens, our environment and the financial health of the City. The team includes citywide grants coordination, sustainability efforts, and City Contracting functions, as well as a comprehensive innovation effort for the entire organization. They seek to improve business processes, increase efficiency, consolidate redundant services, and realize the maximum potential of new technologies. The team pursues reductions in the impact of the municipal government on the natural environment, promotes environmentally responsible policies and practices, and supports partnerships in our community to foster economic vitality for the future of Colorado Springs. Pictured are fun- and eco-loving team members: Innovation and Sustainability Manager Nick Kittle, Grants Coordinator Jay Anderson, Sustainability Coordinator Carrie McCausland and Energy Efficiency Services Administrator Cathy Crawley. (Photo courtesy of Chris Aaby, Pikes Peak Sustainable Business Network.)

Sign up to get Metro Matters e-newsletter

Mountain Metropolitan Transit has an e-newsletter, Metro Matters, which comes out quarterly. The latest issue covers bus stop snow removal, FREX’s new automatic tire chain system, new ticket vending machines, bicycle lockers and more. Click here to read more. You can sign up to receive the e-newsletter by sending an e-mail to vmccann@springsgov.com.

National architecture experts provide economic development tools and peer examples for the Pikes Peak Region

The Pikes Peak Region  AIA Sustainable Design Assessment Report, now available online. Is a summary of an American Institute of Architects (AIA) review and event that cumulated in September 2011. The report placedparticular emphasis on economic development strategies, suggestions for an effective regional approach, and an approach to regional land use and transportation that emphasizes infill development and the creation of centers /hubs.  The report suggests to the Colorado South Chapter of AIA, which sponsored the event, that our regionmodel approaches currently being used in existing comparable communities. They recommended that our region:

  1. Leverage the Quality of Life Indicators Report into action by developinginformation graphics, videos and other communications tools.
  2. Capitalize quickly on Academy Boulevard as a corridor for retrofitting by Implementing tested suburban form strategies of re-inhabitation, redevelopment, and regreening.
  3. Articulate a coherent and consistent framework for growth with policies and incentives to channel to infill areas and away from not yet urbanized land.

On the heels of these recommendations, Rocky Mountain PBS is taking urban planning mainstream with a four-part national series,  Designing Healthy Communities, over the next four weeks on Sundays at 2 p.m. The first episode features several front range Colorado communities. The air dates are: Feb. 12  Retrofitting suburbia, Feb. 19 –  Rebuilding Places of the Heart, Feb. 26 –  Social Policy in Concrete, and March 4 – Searching for Shangri La.

USGBC Wintergreen celebration features Douglas County School District energy program

Wintergreenis an annual anniversary celebration event hosted by the USGBC Colorado Southern Branch.  Lee Smit, Sustainability Manager with Douglas County School District will present the no cost energy program implemented at their schools and how the program encourages student leadership and puts money back into the classroom.  Over the past four years the program has saved a total of $11M. The event is Monday, Feb. 27, 2012 at Nosh Restaurant, 121 S. Tejon St, Colorado Springs, CO 80903. It runs 5 to 7:30 p.m. with beer, wine, appetizers and networking for the first hour. The event is free to USGBC Colorado Chapter Members and $15 for non-members. To register online, click here.

Pikes Peak Earth Day provides promotion and grant opportunities

Are you hosting a public event for Earth Day? If so, the Pikes Peak Earth Day organization wants to know! This year, they are planning to help get the word out by serving as a clearinghouse for all Earth Month (April) events in the Pikes Peak Region through a special Colorado Springs Independent insert to advertise your event(s) for free and their website.Event submissions must be received before Feb. 20 for placement in the printed insert. Pikes Peak Earth Day will also include Earth Month business specials/coupons and have sponsorship opportunities available to help fund an Earth Day Grant of up to $5,000 towards one project in the Pikes Peak region that meets the mission to, “celebrate our Earth by enhancing awareness and inspiring personal and community action toward a sustainable future”. The grant application deadline is Feb. 29.  Questions? Visit their website at  http://www.pikespeakearthday.org/ or contact Allison Plute, Pikes Peak Earth Month Coordinator, 719-650-7474 or pikespeakearthday2012@gmail.com

The reuse results are in!
  • The final number of holiday cards sent by City employees to St. Judes Ranch for Children for reuse was 757.
  • The approximate value of office supplies that were swapped for reuse by City divisions and local non-profits at the Feb. 2012 Supply-O-Grab was approximately $4,100.
Green Bag Lunch-n-Learn Wednesday, Feb. 29: Print management for conservation

City of Colorado Springs divisions print an estimated 15,000,000 times per year. On Wednesday, Feb. 29, Xerox Customer Service representative Melissa Hart will share the City’s Smart Print Project as a free Green Bag Lunch-n-Learn. The Smart Print Project is an organization-wide initiative to centralize the management of all printers, copiers, scanners and fax machines. As a result of the project, by the end of 2011 the City and Xerox had replaced 646 older individual machines with 118 new energy-efficient multifunction systems. The effect has been to reduce paper use with default double-sided printing, reduce energy consumption by an estimated 50 percent for fewer greenhouse gas emissions, and reduce landfill waste while providing employees with enhanced capabilities for efficiency. Even with a few buildings yet to be converted, increased duplex printing alone reduced paper consumption in 2011 by an estimated 1,750,000 pieces per year. The lunch-n-learn runs over the noon lunch hour, from 12:11 to 12:49 p.m., at the City Administration Building, 30 S. Nevada, in Suite 102. Attendees are encouraged to bring and enjoy their lunches during the presentation. Those who come have the opportunity to win a door prize tote bag made from reused City banners.

Going Greener:

Environmental Sustainability E-Newsletter from the City of Colorado Springs

Question? (719) 385-CSGN (2746) or cmccausland@springsgov.com.

This e-newsletter funded by the State of Colorado Department of Local Affairs and City of Colorado Springs.