Riparian Restoration Efforts Completed in South Medford

Parks, Recreation and Facilities Management News (View All)

Riparian Restoration Efforts Completed in South Medford
Posted: Thursday, March 08, 2018

The Medford Parks, Recreation and Facilities Department today announced completion of the first phase of non-native vegetation removal and ecology improvements on City parkland in south Medford.
Since July 1, 2017, park maintenance staff, in partnership with Oregon Stewardship, treated approximately 350,000 square feet (about eight acres) of civic property in U.S. Cellular Community Park, Bear Creek Park and along the Bear Creek Greenway, improving sightlines, safety and aesthetics.
The ongoing City-funded initiative removed prolific amounts of highly invasive and flammable Himalayan blackberries followed by the planting of thousands native species such as willows, red osier dogwood, snowberries, red currant, alder, Oregon grape, Oregon ash, sedge and Indian plum primarily within 50 feet of the stream bank. These manual-labor-intensive efforts, which included hundreds of volunteer hours from South Medford High School students, enhanced biodiversity and upgraded salmon-bearing stream habitat along Bear, Lazy and Crooked creeks.
The restoration work is most obvious in Bear Creek Park, where citizens can reach the banks of Bear Creek without encountering wide swaths of thorny entanglements for the first time in decades.
The City of Medford and Oregon Stewardship have been engaged in blackberry removal and ongoing maintenance along City-owned downtown sections of Bear Creek for several years, but the Medford City Council approved an additional $90,000 for the 2017-19 budget cycle to expand and accelerate vegetation abatement and restoration along the entire seven-mile stretch of the Bear Creek Greenway within the city limits.
“Our Department is committed to protecting Medford’s dynamic natural and recreational resources for the enjoyment of present and future generations,” Parks, Recreation and Facilities Director Rich Rosenthal said. “When people see the restoration work that has been done, they’ll be impressed. We’re proud of these very noticeable improvements, and we’re grateful for the efforts of Jim Hutchins and his Oregon Stewardship crew.”
Oregon Stewardship is a Medford-based non-profit organization that works with students of all ages to instill the value of stewarding natural resources, and generates college scholarship funds for graduating high-school students interested in environmental issues.
The Department and Oregon Stewardship will now focus on the northwestern section of the Bear Creek Greenway in or near Railroad Park and the undeveloped Midway Park, an enormous blackberry abatement project encompassing over 10 acres of City property.


© 2018 City Of Medford  •  Site By Project A


Select Language

Share This Page

Back to Top