Keep Norwood Cool was initiated in 2018 by Norwood resident Ms. Dana Boll, a designer and life-long environmentalist, to bring awareness to and advocate for healthier microenvironments in Norwood using a community readiness model and innovative designed solutions. Boll recognized that the density of impervious surfaces has increased, and green perimeters decreased, in the City of Norwood over the last three decades. These changes have resulted from urban expansion, urban drought, and loss of tree canopy.
Also concerning, Boll observed that many of Norwood’s five schools are close to highly traveled roads and are surrounded by asphalt playgrounds. Especially during the summer months, these environments have the potential to become heat islands with their own unique high temperature, known as high heat microclimates. Boll quickly identified that emerging cooling strategies exist to reduce the effect of heat islands as well as lower air pollutants that are often associated with them. Boll has since hosted numerous tree planting events and educational charrettes (intensive planning session where citizens, designers and others collaborate on a vision for development.)
Partners in these efforts include the Woven Oak Initiatives, Taking Root 2020, the Wasson Way Project, School Outfitters, the Williams Avenue Elementary School, the Norwood Tree Board, and the Norwood Fire Department’s Community Fun.