A Tree App for Ryerson’s Campus

Ryerson University’s Nature in the City project will be launching a web app that allows a person to walk through campus, stop in front of a tree, and using a mobile browser, be given a wealth of eco-information specific to that tree.

RyersonNC.ca is the spawn of the recently launched Parktrees.ca, a city-wide tree learning experience on trees and the urban forest we live in. This time, the web app is specific to the Ryerson campus, initiated by Andrew Millward, Ryerson geography professor who plays a significant role in Ryerson’s Urban Forestry Research and Ecological Disturbance (UFRED) group.

Screen grab from new mobile web app www.ryersonNC.ca

Screen grab from new mobile web app www.ryersonNC.ca

“This is more forward-thinking. Most if not all of the plantings have been more so reactive than proactive. There isn’t an active maintenance cycle to keep the forest healthy,” says Millward of the Nature in the City project. The diversification of the urban forest is important for it to be sustainable. What the app will be able to do is monitor the diversification of the forest, with new native tree species and shrubs. This will protect it against some of the fatalities, like that of the ash tree, caused by the Emerald Ash Bore crisis.

Nature in the City is a new venture supported by the Social Venture Zone and part of the Arts Eco Action initiative. The app will be launching in partnership with a tree planting event happening on Wednesday in the quad, instigated to represent Ryerson’s Arts Eco Action’s commitment to sustainability on campus.


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