Residents try to change neighborhood’s ‘bad reputation’: Trees grow on West South Street

From the Register-Mail:

Lomac Payton is a 77-year-old resident of West South Street who could pass for a couple decades younger….

The West South Street resident since 1965 went for a walk one Saturday afternoon and started to imagine trees in the terrace area between the sidewalks and street. He decided to make the vision a reality on his block, which runs between South Henderson and South Academy streets….

Supported by Ward 4 Alderman Corine Andersen, who also lives on West South Street, Payton got help from Knox College students on the first two phases of the great tree planting. Residents like William Franklin, who helped spread protective mulch around the young trees Thursday afternoon, also chipped in.

“During the first phase, a Knox student helped me measure and mark out where the trees would go. Knox students helped on the second phase, when we started planting. And some neighbors helped on all three phases. Alderman Andersen even donated a tree.”

So far Payton and his cohorts have planted 45 trees and 15 shrubs along the block.