Climate smart river park on its way for Drakenstein as Municipality receives R7.1m from City of Neumarkt

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Climate smart river park on its way for Drakenstein as Municipality receives R7.1m from City of Neumarkt

Climate smart river park on its way for Drakenstein as Municipality receives R7.1m from City of Neumarkt

 

9 April 2019

 

A climate smart river park featuring a smart green classroom, a river cycling route, an outdoor amphitheatre and an eco-centre is on its way for Drakenstein, thanks to a contribution of R7.1 million by the City of Neumarktin Germany. Planned by Drakenstein Municipalityfor the Paarl Arboretum – a 2.5km-long park on the eastern bank of the Berg River in Paarl – the climate smart river park project will be developed over the next three years.

 

Currently in its planning phase, the climate smart river park project will include the installation of new gates and gateway features in the Arboretum, contemporary signage, and new picnic furniture and toilets, as well as planting more trees and undertaking landscaping improvements. The eco-centre will be used for environmental education and awareness raising.

 

“Drakenstein Municipality welcomes this contribution, which forms part of the Climate Partnership the Municipality has had with the City of Neumarkt for the past five years,” says Alderman Conrad Poole, Executive Mayor of Drakenstein Municipality.

 

“The Municipality and the City of Neumarkt share a vision of a sustainable, eco-savvy local government and community. We highly appreciate the invaluable contribution that our friends from Neumarkt and the joint programme of action between our two municipalities have already made in this regard in Drakenstein. From clearing the banks of the Berg River of invasive alien vegetation (in the Arboretum), environmental education for schools and two school partnerships, to a youth exchange programme between the two regions – the Climate Partnership is surely giving Drakenstein’s green status a boost.”

 

 

The Climate Partnership is administered by Engagement Global, an organisation that is commissioned by the German Federal Government. Engagement Global provides various funding opportunities, for which Drakenstein Municipality had to apply through the City of Neumarkt.

 

The Arboretum’s new smart green classroom will offer interactive lessons on rainwater harvesting, greywater recycling, waste recycling, bio-digestion and solar energy. The climate smart river park project will further include the development of an interactive mobile application as well as a website for the 31-hectare Arboretum, sporting almost 2 200 trees and shrubs and no less than 600 different species.

 

“Following a successful application, we are very pleased that we are now able to kick off this project together with Drakenstein Municipality. I believe we can also learn from each other about how to landscape a park during climate change, as we intend to reshape our own city park in Neumarkt as well,” says Lord Mayor Thomas Thumann, Mayor of the City of Neumarkt. “I further want to point out that Drakenstein and Neumarkt are ‘global responsible municipalities’, because – through our Climate Partnership – we support the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.”

 

Neumarkt has been a Fairtrade City since 2009 and received the German Sustainability Award in 2012. “All the important issues for our common future, such as climate mitigation, and social responsibility or education for sustainable development are integrated into our guiding principles and our sustainability strategy for Neumarkt. So far, we have been implementing numerous sustainability projects on a local level. We have also realised that it is very important for a municipality not only to achieve a better life quality on a local level, but also to try and make a difference on a global level,” says Lord Mayor Thumann.

Lord Mayor Thumann and his delegation of Councillors and officials are visiting Drakenstein from 8 to 12 April 2019 to view Climate Partnership projects and their progress, as well as Fairtrade projects in Drakenstein, schools, youth centres, and housing and regeneration projects.

 

Issued by:

Communication and Marketing, Drakenstein Municipality

 

For media enquiries, contact: Riana Geldenhuys, Manager: Communication and Marketing, Drakenstein Municipality, on 021 807 6390, 082 460 5554 or rianag@drakenstein.gov.za