Berwyn District Civic Association

Thursday, May 16, 2014

1. Agenda Item 1. Officers Present. President Kevin Young called the meeting to order. Other officers also present were 1st Vice President Harry Pitt, 2nd Vice President Richard Morrison, Recording Secretary Liesl Koch, Board of Directors member, Neighborhood Watch Director Nick Brennan, and Berwyn News Editor Elizabeth Kuligowski.

2. Agenda Item 2. Minutes from the Last Meeting. Minutes from the April 2014 meeting contain an error regarding who had asked the State Highway Administration to come to a BDCA meeting to make a presentation (it should read Councilman PJ Brennan). A motion to accept the minutes with amendment from the April 17, 2014, meeting was made, seconded, and passed.

3. Agenda Item 3. Treasurer’s Report. Treasurer Lori Young was unable to attend. President Young reported that BDCA’s current balance is $3,633.66. This reflects a deposit of $500.00 in paid advertising by Fishnet restaurant since last month’s balance of $3,133,66. A motion to accept the Treasurer’s Report was made, seconded, and passed.

4. Agenda Item 4. Special Guests. Lincoln Smith, Researcher with Forested Creative Ecology, gave a presentation on a proposed permaculture planting for the Trolley Trail. Alan Hew, City Councilman for District 4 and previously on the Committee for a Better Environment, was in attendance. The proposal is to establish an "edible garden" along the Trolley Trail that runs through Berwyn. They are seeking support for the proposal from the community. The garden would run along the trail from Greenbelt Road to the playground. Mr. Smith described a similar project he has designed in Greenbelt and a 10‐acre site at a church in Bowie, both of which he encouraged residents to visit. The first three years of the plantings would require regular watering to help the plants get established. The plants would go in next spring. Permaculture is "taking care of the environment and people at the same time." There are lots of opportunities to do good environmentally in the places where we live. Most of our food originates in a culture that feeds a lot of people but removes resources. Establishing "forest architecture" is looking at layers of a forest and trying to imitate that. There's a lot more going on in such an environment than in a monoculture such as a cornfield. We should aspire to polyculture, where plants can provide support to each other, rather than monoculture. Legumes fix nitrate back into the soil. Fungii are part of the ecosystem. There's a need to build up the soil along the Trolley Trail. Diversity in both plants and pests is important. The proposal is a 5‐ or 10‐year vision. The proposed garden would include interpretative signs

along the way, telling you what the plants are. Mr. Lincoln suggests turning the benches along the trail backwards so they're not facing the trail. He recommends a medium shade tree, such as a pecan, just south of the Jack Perry plaza. College Park has budgeted a certain amount of money to this project. The City could expand the amount of money budgeted to the project every year. Businesses might want to "sponsor" a planting ‐ a tree, say. An audience member stated that having a permaculture, edible trail in our City would attract bicyclists. Some residents were concerned about people using the pawpaw fruit as "missiles." Harry Pitt expressed concern about
shrubs providing a haven for criminals and vandalism such as we experienced at James Adams Park. Another resident said that the fruit on the trees is not going to be like the "perfect" fruit we see at the supermarket. A lot of it will end up rotting on the ground. President Young asked about maintenance costs.

5. Agenda Item 5. Miscellaneous Announcements. On June 8, 2014, there will be a “Sunday in the Park” music event at the playground (Cherry Park). The Greenbelt Concert Band has agreed to provide the music.

Neighborhood Watch Director Nick Brennan is hosting a get‐together on Sunday, May 18th, at his house to discuss important issues in the neighborhood. All are welcome to attend.
A detailed site plan has been submitted for the project on Berwyn House Road. There will be an update given at the June BDCA meeting.
Next month is the annual election of BDCA Officers. Everyone was encouraged to attend the
June meeting to vote.

6. Agenda Item 6. New Business. There was no new business.

7. Agenda Item 7. Unfinished Business. There was no unfinished business.

8. Agenda Item 8. City Councilmen Reports. Councilman PJ Brennan reported that he has been meeting with residents at our senior citizen facilities as well as with people at the Clarice Smith to discuss extending opportunities for the senior citizens to attend events for free. The City Council’s budget review session was not well attended. There are not a lot of changes in the budget; there are no tax increases. The State Highway Administration is studying Knox Road and Route 1 because of the pedestrian traffic fatalities that have occurred. Councilman Brennan has not received a response from the State Highway Administration about attending a BDCA meeting to give a presentation on the Greenbelt Road project.

9. Agenda Item 9. Other Business. The College Park Community Foundation is holding a non‐profit summit on Saturday, June 7th, from 10am to 1pm at City Hall. Anyone interested in non‐profit community service, or with ideas about challenges existing in serving the community, is encouraged to attend.

Denny’s restaurant is now open, and is open 24 hours a day.
The meeting was adjourned at 9:35pm.

Meeting attendees (from sign‐up sheet):

Nick Brennan PJ Brennan Robert Catlin Marina Dullnig Michele Garnes
Karyn Keating‐Volke
Jim Kiernan
Liesl Koch
Ryan McCulley
Richard Morrison
Harry Pitt
Fredrick J. Reynolds
Judy Reynolds
Kevin Young
Liesl Koch, Recording Secretary, BDCA.