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Schenectady County Partners with National Grid and Niskayuna Tree Council to Plant 40 New Trees

Tree Planting on Dean Street in Niskayuna

Final Tree Planted on One Year Anniversary of Storm

Schenectady County’s Conservation District partnered with National Grid and the Niskayuna Tree Council to plant 40 new trees on Dean Street in Niskayuna. The last tree, an Amur Maackia, was planted today near the entrance of Dean Street Park.  

National Grid provided $240,000 to Capital Region counties and cities to support reforestation in parks, public gathering spaces, and under wires that sustained significant damage during a derecho with winds of up to 100 mph that ravaged the Capital Region exactly one year ago on October 7, 2021. Schenectady County received $20,000 of that funding.

The Niskayuna Tree Council contacted home owners on Dean Street to identify what type of tree they would like planted on the right of way in front of their house. Some of the trees planted for this project include: Serviceberry, Red Maple, Katsura, Gingko, Tupelo, Sourwood, Japanese Snowbell, Flowering Cherry, and various species of Dogwood and Redbud trees. Schenectady County’s Conservation District transported and planted the trees, and provided mulch for the project.

“I’d like to thank National Grid and the Niskayuna Tree Council for their dedication to this project,” said Schenectady County Legislator Sara Mae Pratt, Vice Chair of the Environmental Conservation, Renewable Energy & Parks Committee. “When discussing where to plant these trees, we were careful to identify locations throughout the community that would benefit the most. Speeding has been a concern for Dean Street residents, and tree-lined streets can create a neighborhood feel which can help reduce the speed of traffic, so we thought it was a perfect fit. This is one of many fantastic tree planting projects throughout the county.”

“One year ago the region experienced a ‘derecho’ storm that delivered 100 mile per hour, straight line winds that knocked out power to more than 200,000 National grid customers and damaged homes, businesses and many trees,” said Laurie Poltynski, National Grid Regional Executive.Soon after our crews did the tireless around-the-clock work to bring power back to our customers, we got together to see if there was anything else we could do. This was a remarkable event in this region that caused damage to critical facilities and the unfortunate loss of natural resources like trees and other vegetation. We wanted to do something to help with the restoration effort beyond getting the lights back on. We wanted to contribute something with a longer-lasting impact, so we established the Capital Tree Program and today we mark this anniversary with this tree on Dean Street in Niskayuna.”

“We feel fortunate that we were able to partner with National Grid and Schenectady County to plant trees in Niskayuna to help restore the local community that was hit by the storm 1 year ago today,” said Carol Carey, Niskayuna Tree Council Chair. “These trees will help beautify the area, increase the tree canopy, and provide natural habitat for local birds and wildlife. Studies have also shown that mature, tree-lined streets can also reduce traffic speed which has been an ongoing issue on Dean St. The partnership with these other organizations in the planting of these trees will hopefully have a long-lasting benefit to the community.”