A big part of the NW 1st Avenue Streetscape Project is the addition of about 50 shade trees to the avenue. Overheard utilities have been moved underground on the 1600 block and is currently in progress on the 1900 block.
So how are we handling all these trees? NW 1st Avenue will be the second project in the city of Gainesville to have a Silva Cell System. Silva Cells allow for large trees to grow in urban areas through an underground support system and increases their survivability.
Silva Cells are placed in the ground to allow a tree’s roots to expand in urban environments and to keep the sidewalks from getting broken up. These cells are placed several feet underground and filled with a layer of rich top soil to give the trees plenty of nutrients.
Trees are installed and utilities are covered with a special fabric to deter roots from damaging the lines. Limerock is then added on top of the cells for sturdiness and to support the activity happening above ground.