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State awards more than $1m to aid 27 park projects across Mass.

Posted by Matt Rocheleau  July 3, 2012 03:42 PM

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The state has awarded more than $1 million in grants to aid 27 public-private improvement projects at state parks and other public properties across Massachusetts, officials said.

The grants, eight of which will benefit projects in metro Boston, were doled out through an initiative run by Department of Conservation and Recreation Department.

The Partnerships Matching Funds program accepts applications for capital projects from potential partners including friends groups and other park advocacy groups, civic and community organizations, institutions, businesses and individuals, according to the department.

Grant recipients must provide a match of non-state funds for projects, officials said. For contributions up to $25,000, the state provides a two-to-one match. On contributions above $25,000, the state gives a one-to-one match.

For each approved project, the state conservation and recreation department assigns a project manager to help oversee the endeavor and consult with the partners co-funding the effort, according to an announcement from state officials.

Now in its seventh year, projects completed within the program have added more than $10-million in non-state funded improvements to properties managed by the conservation and recreation department

“DCR has an on-going commitment to improving and enriching the natural, cultural and recreational opportunities available to state park users,” said a statement from Department of Conservation and Recreation Commissioner Ed Lambert, who announced the grant recipients last month. “The grants enable projects that enrich the visitor experience and improve quality of life for residents of Massachusetts.”

In a statement, Governor Deval Patrick said: “Partnerships are vital to the future of our parks and beaches. These projects ensure that we are working together to build a better Commonwealth for the next generation.”

The following are the Partnership Matching Fund Grants for this year:

Within metro Boston:

• Back Bay and Beacon Hill
Boston/Charles River Reservation –The Esplanade Association
Partner: $200,000
DCR Match: $150,000
This grant will be used to revitalize the landscape around the Eliot Memorial on the Charles River Esplanade. Continuation of design work created under FY 11 Matching Funds program.

• Back Bay and Roxbury
Emerald Necklace Conservancy
Partner: $15,600
DCR Match: $31,200
This grant will be used to support “Linking the Corridors” project to link two green spaces: the Southwest Corridor (at Ruggles) to the Emerald Necklace (at Back Bay Fens) by complementing Boston Transportation Department conceptual designs.

• Back Bay, Downtown, Dorchester, Fenway, Jamaica Plain, and Roxbury
Parkway Trees Project
Partner: $24,739
DCR Match: $49,479
This grant will be to replace older or missing Red Oak Trees along Emerald Necklace Parkways

• Boston Harbor Islands
Boston Harbor Island Alliance
Partner: N/A
DCR Match: $200,000
This grant will be used for water transportation to Boston Harbor Islands.

• Dorchester
Neponset River Reservation
Partner: $4,445
DCR Match: $8,890
This grant will be used to purchase trees and planting materials for 30 trees to be planted along the Neponset Greenway and in Neponset Park.

• Dorchester
Wahlberg Foundation – McMorrow Park
Partner: $7,000
DCR Match: $11,801
This grant will be used for the purchase and installation of a batting cage.

• Fenway
Fenway Civic Association
Partner: $25,000
DCR Match: $50,000
The grant will be used to improve accessibility for Agassiz Road; to improve drainage; to make the parkway more pedestrian and bike friendly; to restore the historic character of the parkway and to preserve parkland and prevent vehicular parking in the park.

• Jamaica Plain
Arborway Coalition
Partner: $7,154
DCR Match: $14,306
This grant will be used to continue implementation of two aspects of the “Gateway to the Arborway” project: traffic calming, tree planting and tree work, as planned with DCR and the community in 2008.

Outside of metro Boston:

• Arlington, Everett, Chelsea, Medford, Somerville, and Winchester
Mystic River Watershed Association – Mystic River State Reservation
Partner: $15,000
DCR Match: $45,000
This grant will be used to eradicate water chestnuts from the Mystic River system.

• Barre and Oakham
Wachusett Earthday – Mass Central Rail Trail
Partner: $115,000
DCR Match: $100,000
The grant will be used to construct the Mass Central Rail Trail, 1.3 miles from Coldbrook Road, Oakham to the Ware River crossing, Barre.

• Bellingham and Franklin
Bay State Trail Riders Association/Franklin Bellingham Trail Committee – Southern New England Trunkline Trail (SNETT)
Partners: $9,400.83
DCR Match: $18,801.67
This grant will be used for a project designed to improve a section of trail on the SNETT.

• Cambridge
Cambridgeport Neighborhood Association – Charles River Reservation
Partner: $25,000
DCR Match: $50,000
This grant will be used to prepare an historic structure report to inform all subsequent initiatives for the Powder House, including preservation, repair, installation of interpretive markers, and adaptive reuse.

• Cambridge
City of Cambridge – Charles River Reservation, Memorial Drive
Partner: $15,000
DCR Match: $30,000
This grant will be used to install comfort-enhancing modifications to benches along Charles River.

• Easton and Sharon
Friends of Borderland – Borderland State Park
Partner: $5,000
DCR Match: $10,000
This grant will be used for the restoration and rehabilitation of Ames mansion’s historic rock garden. The plan includes removing overgrown vegetation, removing stone dust from the garden path and returning the path to grass, widening the path, and replacing plantings with low-maintenance species.

• Fall River
Friends of Fall River Heritage State Park – Fall River Heritage State Park
Partner: $3,000
DCR Match: $6,000
This grant will be used for the installation of camera system in the visitors’ center.

• Lenox and Pittsfield
Pittsfield State Forest – Berkshire Scenic Railway
Partner: $16,100
DCR Match: $16,100
This grant will be used to repair a 100-year-old DCR-owned rail coach.

• Milton
Mass Audubon – Bluehills Trailside Museum
Partner: N/A
DCR Match: $175,000
This grant will used to provide environmental education programs and materials for school groups, summer camp participants, and general park visitors.

• Natick
Cochituate State Park, Middle Pond
Partner: $15,000
DCR Match: $27,500

• Needham and Newton
Friends of Hemlock Gorge – Hemlock Gorge
Partner: $2,162
DCR Match: $4,323
This grant will be used for the installation of two windows and a door in the historic stone barn. Windows were purchased through prior matching funds program year and are already on-site.

• New Bedford
Schooner Ernestina Morrissey Association – Schooner Ernestina
Partner: $23,500
DCR Match: $47,000
This grant will be used for the replacement of foremast and repairs to mainmast, re-stepping of masts and completion of rigging repair and maintenance.

• Northbridge and Uxbridge
Blackstone River Watershed Association – Blackstone River Heritage State Park
Partner: $7,800
DCR Match: $15,500
This grant will used for Water Chestnut removal.

• Revere
Revere Beach Beautification Committee – Revere Beach
Partner: $2,500
DCR Match: $7,500
This grant will be used to purchase 20 trash receptacles with covers to replace existing cans.

• Sandwich
Friends of Scusset – Scusset Beach State Reservation
Partner: $1,534
DCR Match: $3,068
This grant will be used to fund improvements to beach comfort and maintenance complex.

• Upton
Upton State Forest – Friends of Upton State Forest
Partner: $3,200
DCR Match: $6,400
This grant will be used for the preservation of Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) documents found at Lake Cochituate relative to the state forest and the CCC Camp.

• Ware
National Garden Club – Quabbin Park Cemetery
Partner: $3,380
DCR Match: $6,761
This grant will be used to replace damaged trees within cemetery with trees that will improve landscape.

• Wayland
Wayland Surface Water Quality Committee – Cochituate State Park, North Pond
Partner: $8,000
DCR Match: $16,000
These grants will be used to hire a Diver Assisted Suction Harvesting (DASH) boat company to remove Eurasian Water Milfoil from approximately 5.0 acres in Lake Cochituate.

• West Boylston
Wachusett Earthday – Wachusett Watershed
Partner: $130,000
DCR Match: $130,000
This grant will be complete the construction of the building for recycling and reuse at the Wachusett Watershed Regional Recycling Center.

For more information on the Partnerships Matching Funds Program, and to receive an application for fiscal year 2013, call 617-626-4964, or e-mail conrad.crawford@state.ma.us. Information and applications also are available at www.mass.gov/dcr.

E-mail Matt Rocheleau at mjrochele@gmail.com.
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