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The Audubon Park neighborhood has adopted a plan to transform its namesake park into a showcase of urban ecology and a haven for birds and birdwatchers. The plan envisions a multi-phase, multi-year implementation to establish Audubon Park as a place where people “Bring Nature Home.”
The complete plan (3MB pdf) intends to demonstrate how nature can thrive in a mature city neighborhood. Essential to the plan's vision is an interpretive trail showcasing sustainable and bird-friendly plantings. Visitors will be encouraged to implement similar elements in their own yards, creating oases of nature for their families, and expanding a mutually-supportive habitat beyond the Park itself.
From the plan’s introduction:
How do we, as humans in a fast-paced, urban environment, reconnect with nature in a meaningful way? Is it possible to recapture the seclusion and tranquility of nature in which John Audubon found solace? These questions speak to the challenges presented by Audubon Park in Northeast Minneapolis.
ANA has tapped the expertise of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board, the Audubon Society and the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization in developing the plan. Community input was gathered at several ANA meetings and through targeted interviews. That feedback is reflected in plan details:
Most importantly, the neighborhood will be an essential component towards reconstructing Audubon Park. Exciting restoration projects, spring cleanup events and community celebrations will help to unite the neighborhood around its centrally located and signature park.
The plan does not ignore the active recreational needs of neighborhood residents. All existing facilities have been retained in the master plan, with suggestions for mitigating standing water, noise and conflicts with proposed bird habitat. There is also a 1/2-mile running and walking loop around the park perimeter.
Audubon Park is excited to begin work on creating a regional destination and adding a green jewel for the Eastside within the Minneapolis Parks. Our non-profit partners are excited, too, and have pledged to help arrange necessary funding.