On October 9, 2021, the Gordie Howe International Bridge project team, the Essex Region Conservation Authority (ERCA) and other community volunteers planted 25 large-stock native trees at College Avenue Bikeway Park as part of the project’s Community Benefits plan.

The Community Benefits team partnered with ERCA on the Triple Tree Impact initiative, investing $50,000 towards tree planting and public education to be held in Sandwich and west Windsor parks and schools. ERCA will hire a part time student to establish a school ground greening program as part of the initiative. Planting more trees will help the Sandwich community enjoy the benefits trees bring to neighborhoods like shade, cleaner air, beautification, and habitats for wildlife.

More tree plantings will be scheduled for spring 2022 and details will be shared closer to those planting dates. A similar tree-planting initiative occurred earlier this year in partnership with Greening of Detroit, where southwest Detroit residents living near the project area had an opportunity to receive a free tree for their property. Together, the two initiatives reflect community feedback that identified landscaping and aesthetics as priorities for inclusion in the Community Benefits Plan.