Clean water, trails, parks, how Freshwater Land Trust transforms our community

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Rotary Trail Sign
Rotary Trail in downtown Birmingham. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

Throughout 2021 Freshwater Land Trust (FLT) is celebrating its 25th Anniversary. Perhaps no organization has changed the landscape of Birmingham and Central Alabama for the better than Freshwater Land Trust. Here is their story.

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New Jones Valley Trail Extension will connect Railroad Park to Avondale by end of 2021

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Jones Valley Trail
Jones Valley Trail Extension ground-breaking in Birmingham, Alabama on April 22, 2021. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

Birmingham is adding to the Red Rock Trail System! On Earth Day, the Freshwater Land Trust (FLT) broke ground on the highly anticipated Jones Valley Trail Extension. The groundbreaking ceremony took place behind the M2 building at 3501 1st Avenue South, where a portion of the trail extension will be located. 

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Bham metro is now home to 7 “litter gitter” devices thanks to the Freshwater Land Trust and partners

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Rusha Smith (in grey) with the Freshwater Land Trust addresses Project Litter Gitter launch at McCallum Park in Vestavia Hills, Alabama. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

Last week, the Freshwater Land Trust officially launched Project Litter Gitter, installing five new litter gitter devices in Birmingham (2), Bessemer Homewood and Vestavia Hills.

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Connecting Birmingham: Jones Valley Trail to extend from downtown to Avondale

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The Jones Valley Trail along First Avenue South is set to connect Downtown to Avondale by the end of the year. Photo courtesy of Freshwater Land Trust

Freshwater Land Trust announced some exciting news this week—the Jones Valley Trail along First Avenue South will soon connect downtown Birmingham to Avondale. Here’s the latest on the project.

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Freshwater Land Trust installs “Litter Gitter” at Valley Creek

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Freshwater Land Trust and Osprey Initiative installed a “Litter Gitter” at Valley Creek last week. Photo via Osprey Initiative on Facebook

We all know litter is bad for the environment, yet it continues to be a problem. Last week, Freshwater Land Trust, Osprey Initiative, River Network and the City of Birmingham installed a “Litter Gitter” in Valley Creek to help with the issue. 

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Red Mountain Park was once a sea of stumps? Explore 200 years of landscape changes in Alabama

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Aerial photo of the what is today Red Mountain Park in the 1900s. Photo courtesy of Red Mountain Park

When I was in the 4th grade, I took my first Alabama history class. Without fail, each day, the teacher outlined Alabama on the chalkboard–the rectangular box with the “high heels” that is Baldwin and Mobile counties. At the end of each class, she would wipe away that outline of the state.

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This rare and tiny fish has become a catalyst for restoring Birmingham’s springs and connecting communities. Find out how.

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Seven Springs at Faith Apostolic Church. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

Have you ever seen a Watercress Darter? Chances are you haven’t…up close.

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6 ways you can protect Alabama’s public lands including becoming a Wilderness Ranger

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Sipsey Wilderness Big Tree
The “Big Tree” in the Sipsey Wilderness. Photo credit: Tony Barber

This past December 2018, heavy rains and winds blew down a large pine tree on top of the Turkey Creek Nature Preserve greenhouse. Constructed only a couple of years ago, the purpose of the greenhouse was to grow native trees and flora and plant them within Forever Wild’s Turkey Creek Nature Preserve. Its untimely destruction was a huge setback for the preserve financially and ecologically.

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Reviving the urban planning wisdom of Birmingham’s 1925 Olmsted plan with the Red Rock Trail System

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Birmingham, Alabama, Red Rock Trail System, Freshwater Land Trust
The Red Rock Trail System enables citizens to bike, walk and run the Magic City. Photo by Greg Harber via Freshwater Land Trust’s Instagram

In the 1920s, Birmingham employed the skills of a true urban planning visionary, Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. We see his mark today in places like Ward and Rushton Parks, but his full-fledged master plan? It fell through the cracks. Today, the Red Rock Trail System is bringing it back, one trail at a time.

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Watch videos released about Birmingham Audubon, Freshwater Land Trust and Turkey Creek Nature Preserve

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Screenshot of the recent Birmingham Audubon video about the W.E. Putnam Urban Farm

Over the past two months, videos about the work of the Birmingham Audubon Society, Freshwater Land Trust and the Turkey Creek Nature Preserve have been published on social media.

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