The Berkeley Partners for Parks nonprofit has joined the Sierra Club, the Audubon Society, and the California Native Plant Society in supporting the study of the Native Plant Area in Cesar Chavez Park proposed by the Chavez Park Conservancy. John Steere, President and Chair of Berkeley Partners for Parks, describes the study as “an exciting opportunity to support the future of native plant communities. Native plants not only provide valuable food and habitat for birds and other wildlife, but they also bring joy to local members of our community while pulling carbon out of the atmosphere.”
The Chavez Park Conservancy applied for and won a $5,000 grant from the UC Chancellor’s Community Fund to support the proposed study. The Conservancy has raised additional funds from private philanthropy. Two experienced and highly qualified native plant consultants are prepared to conduct the study, and Prof. Joe McBride of the UC College of Environmental Design, an internationally recognized authority on park restoration, is the university sponsor of the project. The Native Plant Area is the forested grove on the west side of the park just north of the parking circle at the end of Spinnaker Way (map).
The study would require no City of Berkeley staff time or money. However, native plant preservation still awaits recognition as an urgent priority from the City’s Parks Department. The UC Chancellor’s office requires the Parks Department’s stamp of approval before the grant money can be released.
Here is a copy of the letter from Berkeley Partners for Parks. Copies of earlier letters from the Audubon Society, Sierra Club, and Native Plant Society are attached to an earlier post here.