Valvoline donates $300,000 to Town Branch Park for environmental efforts

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ/Press Release) – Valvoline is donating $300,000 to Town Branch Park for environmental efforts, which aligns with one of the company’s philanthropic priorities, park organizers announced Thursday.

“We appreciate this generous donation to Town Branch Park,” said Allison Lankford, the park’s executive director. “Valvoline’s corporate commitment to environmental stewardship will come alive in the park. Not only will the park serve an important role in supporting a healthy environment in the heart of the city, it also will be a living laboratory of ecology, providing learning opportunities for families and children.”

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“We’re proud to have our world headquarters in Lexington, and we’re committed to making this great city an even better place for all of our neighbors to live and work,” said Valvoline CEO Sam Mitchell. “As a project focused on improving quality of life and environmental stewardship, Town Branch Park perfectly aligns with our corporate giving priorities, and we’re excited to see it come to life.”

By converting almost 10 acres of asphalt to natural green space and restoring the streambed of Town Branch, the park will help improve air and water quality, decrease the urban heat island effect, and provide healthy habitats for humans, wildlife and plants within Lexington’s urban core.

“By peeling away these layers of concrete and blacktop, Town Branch Park will expose and restore the streambed and a piece of our history, making it the centerpiece of the park,” Lankford said. “Through award-winning design and programming for all ages, visitors will be able to view and appreciate a more ecologically productive waterway with thriving species of plants, insects, birds and fish.”

Lexington’s EPA Consent Decree, which includes upgrades to the sewer system, is already working to clean Town Branch. Once the consent decree is complete, sewage overflows into the stream will be dramatically reduced.

Town Branch Park is a crucial piece of visualizing this transformation.

Although most of the consent decree work focuses on increasing the size of sewer pipes and creating storage tanks, the park will be the first piece of the water quality transformation that will be visible as a healthy stream.

Town Branch Park is being built by the community for the community with private donations.

Led by civic leaders and philanthropists, Town Branch Park is working to transform acres of parking in the Manchester Parking Lot behind Rupp Arena into an inviting, dynamic, fun, and uncommonly beautiful green space that will reflect the culture and spirit of Lexington.

The Park will be funded, programmed and maintained through private donations and grants.