Where others see parking lots, streets and sidewalks, Valerie Magnuson sees plains,
meadows and grasses.
And under the six inches of concrete that make up the parking lot where East Chestnut Street turns into Baxter Avenue (and where The Flea Off Market and the Phoenix Hill NuLu Farmer’s Market are held), Magnuson imagines a forest.
On Oct. 20, a fleet of volunteers wielding diamond-toothed saws will slice the lot’s concrete into 3 foot by 3 foot sections, and then pry them up. In their place, volunteers will plant 20 trees on Nov. 3.
It’s all part of a new, guerrilla effort from Magnuson called DePave — to target privately-owned property for more climate-cooling trees. In the city’s downtown alone, there are 380 surface parking lots — many treeless.