Venice Urban Forest

Just the Facts

  • 33 acres along the Intracoastal Waterway
  • Conservation Foundation is partnering with VABI (Venice Area Beautification, Inc.) to reforest a former railway corridor in the heart of Venice
  • Located between the eastern leg of the Venice Waterway Trail and the Seaboard Industrial Park, extending between Venice Avenue and Center Road
  • Public access will be available
  • Gulf Coast Community Foundation has awarded a $100,000 matching grant to spur community support

Why It Matters

Conservation Foundation is partnering with VABI (Venice Area Beautification, Inc.) to reforest the former CSX railroad adjacent to the Venetian Waterway Park. Once completed, the Urban Forest will extend about 1.75 miles and provide a sanctuary for many insects, birds, and animals, and a natural-area park for all to enjoy. Your support is needed now as VABI works to complete the first phase.

The Urban Forest is integral to the City of Venice's urban design introduced by noted American landscape architect John Nolen in 1926.  This greenbelt corridor complements Nolen's design principles based on "nature leading the way." The Urban Forest will stretch from the Venice Train Depot to Center Road and will provide a beautiful woodland trail for pedestrians parallel to the Venetian Waterway Park. All native trees and shrubs are being planted so that the forest provides habitat specifically for migratory songbirds and native wildlife.

Early community partners and in-kind donors include William Jervey, Bill Farnsworth, Gulf Coast Community Foundation, ArtisTree Landscape, Clark Connections, JT Holland, Shipps Excavating, Simply Trees, H&H Signs, Petra Prion Photography, and Lowes. The multi-year project will be completed in phases and Phase One will open to the public once completed.

As of January 2019, more than 600 trees of 32 species and understory plants are in place. Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast is delighted to partner with VABI to build resources and public awareness for this unique community conservation project.


Need to Know

Gulf Coast Community Foundation has awarded a $100,000 matching grant, raising the visibility of this transformative community project. With your support, you join our conservation community and help restore this special property forever.  Donate now and help build the Venice Urban Forest, tree by tree. 

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