Sustainability has always been at the forefront of University Research Park’s efforts. URP’s “green” initiatives are focused on native vegetation restoration, responsible water management, and energy efficiency.
Pollinators in the Park
University Research Park has paired up with a local bee keeper to welcome two small bee hives to park prairie. The hives are located on the back side of the 505 S. Rosa Road building under the tree at the corner of the building. URP would like all surrounding buildings and tenants to be aware and there will be a sign posted in the area.
We are currently in a losing battle to maintain two of our biggest pollinators, butterflies and bees. There are several reasons why they are in decline but one of the biggest reasons is that they are lacking in food. Our society has eliminated prairies and open fields to have them replaced with crops that don’t provide food for the pollinators. In addition, we mow ditches and spray for “weeds” eliminating plants that are undesirable for us but are a major food source for pollinators.
A bee can typically forage around 2 miles from their hive for food. In some areas of the country, that entire ground could be covered by crops that don’t provide food for them (corn and soybeans) and they starve. University Research Park maintains almost 20 acres of restored prairie that is bursting with flowers and nectar producing plants that require bees to flourish. Adding bees to this restored prairie will be useful and provide ample food that will easily support the 100,000 bee population this summer. While the bees may produce excess honey that can be harvested, the main goal is to strengthen the prairie and the help the bee population. The two Warre´-style hives that are installed this year are designed for simplicity and efficiency…something that bees are very good at!
Tours are available, call 441-8000 for more information.
URP Bees Image Gallery
Green Parking Lot Lighting Project
URP teamed up with the Green Madison Project to replace all traditional parking lot lighting with induction lighting.
The lower wattage bulbs burn as brightly as traditional bulbs but last longer, use less energy, reduce utility bills, and are more easily recyclable.
Native Habitat Restoration
URP actively works to restore and enhance native vegetation on our lands. This is done to meet a number of goals:
– Maintain and enhance wildlife habitat
– Increase native plant diversity
– Improve soil and water quality
– Reduce long-term maintenance costs
The brief video below shows the controlled burn process in action at URP: