CSU's Oxbow Meadows Makes Plans For A Walkway Among The Trees

Columbus, Ga. - Planners and engineers are in town through Wednesday this week to plan an exciting new addition to CSU's Oxbow Meadows Environmental Learning Center - a system of suspended walkways that will allow visitors to literally walk among the treetops.

Called a tree canopy, the walkway in the sky will further set apart Oxbow Meadows as a unique outreach center for learning and research. Only a few places in the United States have a tree canopy available to the public.

As a matter of fact, the company designing and building the tree canopy, Greenheart Construction, has been featured in National Geographic magazine and the Oxbow project will be their first tree canopy built in the United States.

The project is becoming a reality thanks to a generous donation and continued support from MeadWestvaco, said Becky Champion, director of Oxbow Meadows.

'This is such an exciting addition - for the public, for local students and for CSU students and faculty! The public will be able to have a bird's eye view of the tree canopy that is impossible to duplicate,' she said. 'Regional students and faculty will be afforded exceptional research possibilities that are not available anywhere else in this area of the country. The students and faculty will join a unique world-wide tree canopy research network.'

The canopy will be approximately 40 feet off the ground and 150 feet long. Swinging from ropes high in the trees, designers will be taking measurements this week. They will then return to the Canadian factory to assemble the canopy trail, which will arrive in Columbus in April for installation.

An outreach Center of Excellence of Columbus State University that attracts thousands of local school students and visitors very year, Oxbow Meadows is a nature discovery center located on 1,600 acres of hardwood wetland habitat off Lumpkin Road in Columbus. Adjacent to the Chattahoochee River, Oxbow features two nature trails that wind between ponds and a hands-on interpretive facility that focuses on the natural and cultural history of the region. Live and mounted animals are on display, including turtles, snakes, birds, frogs, spiders, fish and an alligator.

For more information, please contact Becky Champion at (706) 687-4090.

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Relevant Web sites:

* Greenheart Construction:
www.greenheartconstruction.com

* https://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2003/10/1007_031007_canopywalkways.html