August 11, 2011
About Fairfax County Restoration Project
For the Fairfax County Restoration Project (FCRP), the future of Fairfax County includes restored natural areas, trees and a beautiful, healthy environment in which to work and live.
FCRP is a public-private partnership dedicated to strengthening the relationship between people and nature through community action. The organization works with public entities, private organizations, volunteer organizations and the business community to mobilize resources to improve the environment and quality of life of area residents.
"Instead of doing projects, we are a facilitator," said Jim McGlone, public information officer for FCRP. "People come to us with a project, we determine what resources they need and connect them to those resources."
Amy Gould, a local real estate agent, founded FCRP to alleviate the local impacts of major construction projects.
FCRP's all-volunteer leadership includes representatives from the Virginia Department of Forestry, Fairfax County Park Authority, Lands & Waters and the Sierra Club.
"This project is important because it breaks down barriers," McGlone said. "Often times government agencies are working along parallel tracks with non-profits – we help efficiently combine and utilize resources to get more accomplished."
In the two years since its inception, FCRP has helped establish an organic vegetable garden at George Mason University with a grant from Transurban-Fluor and worked with the City of Falls Church Water Utility to create an outdoor classroom for Chesterbrook Elementary School and Falls Church City schools.
FCRP is currently working with Reforest Fairfax to plant trees in Fairfax County and with the Fairfax County Tree Commission on the Celebrated Trees of Fairfax County project.
495 Express Lanes Community Grant Support
While FCRP was making a difference in the community, it was lacking a Web presence. Community members had nowhere to go to access information about FCRP or learn about how to get involved. With the help of a grant from Transurban-Fluor, FCRP worked with Eze Solutions – which matched the grant – to create its Web site.
McGlone said the Web site is important for two reasons – it serves as the public face for the project and is a place to direct people for more information.
"The site serves as a clearinghouse for things going on environmentally in the community," McGlone said. "Those interested in getting involved can visit the site and learn more about community gardens, planting trees, etc."
Transurban-Fluor chose to support the FCRP because of the organization's mission to improve natural areas in Fairfax County.
"Transurban cares about the environment and the impact of construction on the community and surrounding ecosystem," said Tim Steinhilber, general manager of the 495 Express Lanes Project. "For these reasons we are supporting FCRP and its Web site – a tool that will help FCRP generate awareness and secure support for the great work it does for the community and environment."
FCRP launched the new Web site in September 2009. McGlone said the site has received positive feedback.
"Without grant support, none of this would have been possible," McGlone said. "As a team of volunteers, we have no financial resources. This grant shows us that Transurban wants to be good members of the community – they are going to be with us for a very long time."
There are numerous ways to get involved with FCRP. The organization is always looking for places to plant trees. They also welcome businesses, non-profits, home owners, students and volunteers to help with everything from tree planting to green landscaping.
For more information on FCRP, please visit: www.fcrpp3.org