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Council to Discuss Using UMd Talents to Address City’s Sustainability Challenges.

The partnership can help residents have solar energy on their house rooftops

At tomorrow’s worksession, the Council will discuss a proposal for the City-University Partnership to launch a Sustainable College Park project that creates opportunities for UMD students, staff, and faculty to put their knowledge into practice by addressing College Park’s sustainability challenges.

Students, staff, and faculty in various departments and living learning programs could research, design, and implement projects that would reduce environmental impacts, improve quality of life for College Park residents, and contribute to the economic development of the City.

This would provide innovation and entrepreneurship experience to students while greatly benefiting the greater College Park community.

Projects could include:

  • Designing and constructing rain gardens to improve storm water management Citywide
  • Partnering with local K-12 schools to help them become certified green schools
  • Installing solar panels and other green technology at sites throughout the City
  • Developing a bicycle and pedestrian master plan that blends City University boundaries, and creates new walkable, bike-friendly spaces throughout the community
  • Improving waste management to reduce waste going to county’s near-capacity landfills
  • Helping residents save energy, grow food, and create healthier households.

The proposal recommends that the City and University jointly fund the Sustainable City Project, which would provide a salary for a project manager and funding to implement projects. The project manager could jointly report to the UMD Office of Sustainability and the College Park Planning and Development Department in coordination with UMD’s Office of Community Engagement and other pertinent units.

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