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West Campus Project Includes Teaching Garden, Amphitheater Inspired by Former Grove

Spring has sprung on part of Texas A&M’s West Campus set aside in 1998 by the Board of Regents.

Wildflowers planted by Wildseed Farms last year at the corner of Discovery Drive and John Kimbrough Boulevard were part of the 45-acre Gardens and Greenway Project to restore White Creek.GardensGreenwayMap

Project Coordinator Dr. Doug Welsh said Monday “if  [people] get out in the next couple of weeks or so, they can probably take a look and get a picture or two. It keeps them from having to take their picture on I-45 with traffic.”

He said Dr. Mark Hussey, interim President and previous Dean of the College of Agriculture, approved the project in 2012 and committed to creating an environment to engage students and train future teachers.

“Their vision is to see yellow school buses lined up, to come to this campus and experience Texas A&M and be exposed to the natural sciences.”

The project received $1.5 million in funding through the university. Dr. Welsh said additional funding will be raised through donations.

The first of four phases will focus on a three-acre teaching garden, which Dr. Welsh said would be one of about 10 to 15 nationwide.

Future phases include plans for a coffee station, post oak savannah wildscape, and the return of a famed tradition, the Grove.

Dr. Welsh said the Grove was an important part of student life mid-century as an outdoor venue, but was neglected in the ’80s and ’90s before being demolished in 2003.

The proposed Grove Amphitheater could hold as many as 1,000 people and will draw architectural inspiration from the original, Dr. Welsh said.

“The vision would be to have Lyle Lovett with a guitar in front of a thousand of his favorite Aggies.”


Click below to listen to the extended interview with Dr. Doug Welsh and WTAW’s Patrick Zeinert.



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Posted by on Apr 16 2014. Filed under Featured Stories, News.
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