New Garden Brings Vital Pollinators to Rogers Park Community

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In a world where green spaces are increasingly replaced by towering skyscrapers and asphalt roads, the pollinator garden on S&C Electric Company’s campus is bringing locals and wildlife together.

The garden was officially unveiled on July 20, 2023, as part of S&C’s annual Sustainability Week. It serves as a haven of biodiversity, right in the heart of Chicago, and breathes new life into the urban environment. Popular with bees, butterflies, and an array of other precious pollinators crucial to the planet’s ecosystem, this garden represents S&C’s values-driven culture and commitment to fostering sustainability within its communities.

At the ribbon cutting, Alderperson Maria Hadden, a member of Chicago's environmental protection committee, highlighted the critical role of corporate sustainability. “As an economic anchor for our community and one of the largest employers on the north side of the city, S&C Electric Company has shown an admirable commitment to environmental stewardship. The new pollinator garden at Pratt and Ridge will be an outstanding community asset that will not only help the environment but also provide a respite to enjoy and reconnect with nature.”

More than just a pretty place, the pollinator garden on S&C’s campus supports the local community by:

  • Increasing biodiversity and habitat
  • Managing stormwater runoff and soil erosion
  • Drawing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere
  • Providing food and shelter for insects and birds
  • Creating a serene space for staff, visitors, and neighbors to enjoy

Planting the Seeds for Change

While the garden was just recently unveiled, the project began in 2019, when S&C team members noticed parts of the company’s campus could serve as native garden gateways for local wildlife. With help from the Field Museum’s Keller Science Action Team, the company identified the northwest corner of its 46-acre Chicago campus as the perfect location. So, S&C transformed the Arlys Conrad Memorial Park into a native pollinator garden, featuring a mix of prairie and woodland plants that bloom throughout the entire growing season.

With planting completed in 2022, the 2023 growing season marked the first official bloom of the new garden. The company held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to thank the community partners who helped turn its vision for the garden into a reality. S&C also welcomed its neighbors from the Rogers Park community to begin enjoying the beautiful new space.

Attendees shared the space with some smaller, but just as important guests: the pollinators to whom this garden is a critical habitat. Birds, butterflies, bees, and grasshoppers joined the celebration and demonstrated the value of sustainable landscaping.

“We hope this garden can serve as an inspiration to other local businesses, neighborhood groups, and schools. It's an example of how to expand sustainability efforts through something simple yet powerful,” said Brian Kane, S&C's senior manager of safety and environmental services.

Publication Date

August 8, 2023