A new website launched today by the city, in partnership with Bellevue College and other community partners, is helping residents chart a path to sustainability by putting local resources and features on the map -- literally.
GreenWA.org, a form of community outreach for the city's Environmental Stewardship Initiative, engages users with vibrant maps, interactive videos and information that showcase options for more sustainable living on the Eastside. From producing clean energy at your home to driving cars without gas, finding local farmers markets or fish-bearing streams -- GreenWA helps users visualize and implement a path to healthier and more locally engaged living.
The site is organized into six main subject categories -- Natural Environment, Mobility, Green Building, Local Economy, Culture & Community, and Reuse & Recycle. Each has a "Maps" section, which uses icons to display resources, infrastructure and engagement opportunities; a "Tours" section comprised of videos clips on the topic; and a "Knowledge" section with written content, links and additional learning opportunities.
"We wanted to create a fun, easy, way for people to become aware that there was a sustainability value to these great assets in their community - to make the connection between these social, economic and ecological assets and their quality of life," said Sheida Sahandy, director of Bellevue's Environmental Stewardship Initiative. "And we plan to grow the site for more active community participation so that, for example, a school could do a project with students geo-locating their favorite trees and posting them on our maps."
The website's "Get Involved" page already allows users to contribute to a Public Tree Map, posting noteworthy trees, and sharing the stories behind them.
Other community partners contributing to the site include the 12,000 Rain Gardens for Puget Sound campaign, Northwest SEED, Cascade Bicycle Club and Cascade Water Alliance -- organizations that are the fabric of today's efforts to make our communities cleaner, happier, healthier and more economically competitive. Additional partners and user feedback will be welcome contributions as the site continues to grow.
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