Public-Private Partnership Announced to Restore Waterfall and Green Space on GHS Campus

The Waterfall Project at Greenwich High School is a public-private partnership working in cooperation with the Board of Education, the Greenwich Sustainability Committee, and the Board of Selectmen of Greenwich.

The Waterfall Project is co-chaired by Ashley Cole and Greenwich Board of Education member Joe Kelly.

Waterfall on GHS campus. Photo Leslie Yager
Waterfall on GHS campus. Photo Leslie Yager

Greenwich Green & Clean will act as one of the lead agencies assisting in the town wide effort to re-imagine the waterfall, holding pond, and the surrounding natural area at East Putnam Ave and Hillside Rd at the eastern corner of the Greenwich High School campus.

The landscape design is being graciously donated by Sam Bridge Nursery.

The Waterfall Project project aims to preserve and protect the last natural and environmentally sensitive site on the GHS campus. It is estimated that over 800 trees have been removed from the campus over the past two decades and this effort will help in returning important trees, flora and fauna to benefit the delicate surrounding wetlands, as well as the student population, the neighborhood – indeed the entire community. Over 20,000 cars and pedestrians pass this site every day, and the restoration of this area will create an amazing space which will truly be one of the loveliest vistas in all of Greenwich.

Reached for comment, First Selectman Fred Camillo said he was excited about the project.

“I salute Ashley, Joe, and all of the neighbors and advocates who have been speaking about this for several months now,” Camillo said. “This public private partnership will enhance what is possibly one of the most untapped natural spaces in town, and promises to be a major landmark in our beautiful town.”

Co-chair Ashley Cole said trees, plants and flowers feed hearts and nurture the soul.

“The potential of the amazing spot is unlimited,” Cole said. ” Think of all the people who will enjoy the natural beauty of our native watershed and landscape as they drive or walk by. It could rival Crocus Hill as one of the signature spots in Greenwich.”

“Many people don’t realize that the GHS campus sits atop one of the most important watersheds in Greenwich,” she continued. “Replacing all the trees that have been removed is crucial for the management and sustainability of our environment. It is also important to protect and preserve the last natural spot on the campus for the benefit of the students, the neighborhood and indeed the entire community.”

JoAnn Messina, chair of the Greenwich Tree Conservancy said the GTC had agreed to plant any trees requested by the partners and continues to advocate against removing any additional canopy trees from the GHS campus.

Greenwich Green & Clean is led by Mary Hull and Kanako MacLennan.

Maggie Bridge and Steve Johnson lead the landscaping design team at Sam Bridge.

Other partners include the Conservation Coalition, and the GHS created Greenwich Environmental Advocacy Group, as well as many environmental and horticultural organizations in our community.