Beach Projects and Improvements
Long Term Landscape Planning at Shelburne Beach
In 2015, The Recreation Department and Committee began assessing the situation of many trees at the beach that were in bad shape. Several large conifers were leaning increasingly more toward the playground and on the power line. Several maples had lost leaves on half of the tree and the remainder of the tree did not look healthy. Several trees throughout the facility were almost completely dead. We consulted an arborist and quickly realized that over the next several years a large portion of the trees in the park would be lost or need to come down. We wanted to create a planting plan for new trees that would enhance the facility as well as thrive in the harsh conditions. We reached out to the Tree Advisory Committee for input on the trees and plan at the beach, as well as for help in providing new trees through grants and memorial donations they were working on.
In the spring of 2016 we began working together to discuss the long term plan for removal of dead and damaged trees and replanting of new ones. There were many factors to consider and discuss, including the type of trees, location, shade, longevity, droppings, and more. The discussion and site visits quickly led to more questions than answers, and we felt compelled to look for more help. With no budget to hire consultants, the Tree Advisory Committee recommended getting in touch with David Rafael, a landscaper with Landworks, who also teaches a class at the University of Vermont. His landscape design class ultimately took on the project of assessing our beach facility and making recommendations for a long term plan and design. The class made site visits to our Beach in the Fall of 2016. Individually, each student came up with a unique design idea. Members of both Committees attended the final project individual presentations in December of 2016. Collectively, the final summary is a strong recommendation for future consideration by the Town. David Rafael presented this at the Recreation Committee meeting in April, 2017. The PDF is available under related documents on this page. Moving forward, the Recreation Committee, Parks and Recreation Department, and the Tree Advisory Committee plan to continue working on finalizing a long term plan and continue to work on the tree issues at the Beach.