Mark A. Olinger, Director of Planning and Review, City of Richmond
“Capital Trees has created a beautiful, welcoming place along the Capital Trail in the city. They took an ugly, abandoned strip of land and turned it into a parklike setting that I now look forward to walking as often as possible. Their dedication and commitment to raising our awareness of green landscapes inspires me and others to remember how important it is for our collective well-being as a city.”
When more than 300,000 visitors arrive in RVA by way of the Virginia Capital Trail each year, the first part of the city they see is the green space along the banks of the James River and the Kanawha Canal. This area, which had been severely neglected and overrun by weeds and invasive plants, didn’t make the best first impression for our beautiful city.
Capital Trees, which works to identify, create, environmentally restore and beautify public urban green spaces in RVA, began rehabilitating these 5.5 acres in 2015. The result was the Low Line Gardens, an urban oasis beneath CSX’s train trestles, where tourists, downtown workers and others residents can bike, walk and enjoy nature.
Yet another benefit of this project is the three-acre riparian buffer, or vegetated strip that helps shade and partially protect the James River watershed. The next phases of this project will include creating the Low Line Green, a beautiful urban green space for community gatherings, and enhancing the portion of the Capital Trail that runs under the CSX trestle.
Vibrant open spaces, integrating the best science and design practices, benefit a community on multiple levels: social, economic, public health and environmental. Capital Trees is a group of passionate horticulturalists, landscape architects, historians, planners, community activists, businessmen and women, lawyers, bankers, architects, writers and conservationists who recognize the value of Richmond’s public landscapes and are making the most of it!
Help transform Richmond into a greener, more beautiful and more livable city by volunteering or donating to Capital Trees today!