Detroit and Belle Isle to Receive $300,000 Grant

JEI Admin

Melanie Piana

Detroit and Belle Isle to Receive $300,000 Grant

(Originally published on Mlive.com/author Gus Burns)

Since the Department of Natural Resources took control of the island, an estimated 160 trees, many infected by the ash borer, have been sawed down.

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, D-Lansing, the chairwoman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, on Thursday announced Detroit will receive a $300,000 U.S. Forest Service grant.

The funds are being used to remove trees, wither dangerous or sick, along Detroit streets and on Belle Isle.

“The grant will also support a tree management, maintenance, and restoration plan, which will include replanting trees on Belle Isle and in neighborhoods throughout the city,” said a statement from Stabenow’s office.

Michele Hodges, president of the Belle Isle Conservancy, said an estimated 160 trees have been lost on the island.

MLive has placed calls with the DNR requesting information about how many trees are being targeted for removal and planting.

“Detroiters and visitors to Belle Isle are going to feel the difference this investment will make,” said Rebecca Salminen Witt, President of The Greening of Detroit, in a prepared statement “Tree restoration provides multiple economic, environmental and social benefits to our community—from providing green jobs to protecting the air and soil. This initiative will help make neighborhoods safer and our parks more beautiful. I want to thank Senator Stabenow for being such a strong advocate for Detroit families.”

The DNR began making improvements on Belle Isle early this year and officially took over total control on Feb. 10.

Mlive story: bit.ly/1ncBJ85