Canadian National (CN) Railway and Tree Canada will plant 60 large-diameter trees in five parks across Kitchener.

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Canadian National (CN) Railway and Tree Canada will plant 60 large-diameter trees in five parks across Kitchener. The city was selected to participate in the CN EcoConnexions program, which is funding the planting of 100,000 trees this year in Canada and the United States.

Mayor Berry Vrbanovic
Berry Vrbanovic

“I’m excited for the impact this will have on our urban tree canopy,” said Mayor Berry Vrbanovic. “As a rapidly growing city, it’s more important than ever that our residents have lush green spaces to enjoy. This partnership with CN and Tree Canada is an important step in promoting healthy tree cover in our parks – enhancing a critical natural resource.”

Launched in partnership with Tree Canada in 2014, CN’s EcoConnexion Partnership program aims to both partner with and recognize communities committed to building an efficient and more sustainable future.

“For CN, a sustainable future means thinking and acting in the interest of generations to come. We recognize that it is our responsibility to provide cleaner, more sustainable transportation services to you, our customers and partners, while minimizing the environmental impact of our operations,” said Janet Drysdale, vice president, sustainability.

The $25,000 grant will be used to enhance the tree canopy in Kitchener parks impacted by the invasive Emerald Ash Borer beetle. Until now, efforts have been focused on replacing street trees.

The approximately 60 large-diameter trees funded by the grant will be located where they can have the greatest impact on tree coverage, planted along existing tree watering routes where possible to maximize watering efficiency and reduce costs.

“This funding will allow us to move quickly on something that widely benefits our whole community,” said Councillor Davey. “Improving Kitchener’s tree coverage while enhancing our parks makes our neighbourhoods more vibrant, welcoming, and beautiful.”

Planting large stature trees will improve Kitchener’s tree cover which provides complimentary and lasting benefits, including lowering summer temps through shade, enhancing aesthetics, and providing wildlife habitat.

“Through our EcoConnexions Partnership Program, we continue to deepen our customer relationships, as well as collaborate and learn from each other,” Mark Lerner, vice-president, marketing and business development, said in a statement. “CN is proud to recognize these companies and supply chain partners for their commitment to a more sustainable future.”

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