It’s a great day to be a river lover. According to The Hoover Sun, The Hoover City Council has just accepted a donation of nearly 43 acres of parkland along the Cahaba River. Learn more about the local developers behind this generous donation, and what this means for the future of river protection and preservation.
Signature Homes aims to protect the Cahaba River
In an article Tuesday, The Hoover Sun shared the exciting news of the land donation from development company Signature Homes. Here’s what you need to know:
- The Hoover City Council accepted the donation of 43 acres of parkland, which will be known as, “Flemming Park on the Cahaba”
- It’s located in Trace Crossings
- 5 miles of hiking area, two restrooms and a pavilion have already been developed by Signature Homes, all of which are open to the public
Signature Homes worked closely with an environmental engineer to eradicate all existing invasive species within the parkland area. For good measure, they also planted indigenous species and have promised to maintain the area for 10 years.
Why it matters—Cahaba River Protection
To fully understand the extent of a donation like this, I spoke with Beth Stewart. She’s the Executive Director of the Cahaba River Society and has been involved with the Cahaba River for over 30 years.
First and foremost, she cleared up a common misconception. A river isn’t just what’s in between the banks, but rather the entire area that a river can occupy—especially in the event of a flood (which Hoover has seen its share of this year). She also shared that the surrounding land is completely intertwined with the river, one example being shade provided by trees. When the river is shaded, water stays cooler, which is essential to maintaining the river’s biodiversity.
This is merely a brief introduction to the critical impacts commercial development can have on our river systems. Curiosity piqued? Check out Cahaba River Society’s website to dive deeper.
“Signature Homes is one of the largest scale developers in the Cahaba watershed, so they have a major potential impact for the river. We’ve been in communication and worked with with them for 15+ years to encourage their developments to become more and more protective of the river. We’ve seen a lot of innovation over time, like better stormwater management, and now we’re really appreciative at the commitment their team has made to protecting the land along the river.”—Beth Stewart, Executive Director, Cahaba River Society
But wait, there’s more…
According to The Hoover Sun, this is just phase one of a much bigger initiative. In fact, the donation will eventually cover 130 acres, stretching three miles along the Cahaba.
And this project is coming in hot. Signature Homes plans to donate the remaining acres by the end of 2022, along with some additional trail work.
We can’t wait to enjoy the incredible green space along the river and credit local businesses for prioritizing the protection and preservation of it. Here’s to many more years of exploring, learning and embracing the gorgeous Cahaba River!
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