Photo: Juan Castro Olivera

“Key Biscayne residents will have it made in the shade soon, with 59 trees to be planted from a Miami-Dade County Neat Streets grant, and a 60th tree which was recently planted at Lake Park with the help of young students from the K-8 School.

That 10-foot bald cypress will be symbolic of the Village’s latest award, being named Tree City USA for 2022 by the National Arbor Foundation for its, well, tree-mendous efforts on beautification, adding oxygen into the atmosphere and extending the precious canopy to keep the environment cooler.

Olga Garcia, Zoning Plans Reviewer and Planner with the Village, was presented with the official certificate from the National Arbor Day Foundation during the last Village Council meeting by Mayor Joe Rasco for her efforts in getting Key Biscayne designated as a Tree City USA community. village council meeting

‘It’s a very nice thing to get; Olga handled most of the application,’ said Jeremy Calleros Gauger, director of the Building, Zoning and Planning department. ‘I think the symbolic portion of it is how much tree canopy Key Biscayne had added over 30 years, even 10 years.’

He said the island’s 26% coverage is more than most other Miami-Dade municipalities, but ‘there’s still room for improvement.’

Key Biscayne becomes the 165th Tree City USA in Florida and one of 3,653 recognized cities across the country, ‘a relatively small number when you think how many cities there are,’ Calleros Gauger said.”

— Hillard Grossman, Islander News

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