The Friends of the Old Fish Hatchery received a $20,000 donation to support restoration efforts at the nature area near White Rock Lake.

Oncor, which provided the donation in August, removed a line of vegetation almost a year ago along its three-acre transmission line right of way.

The Friends of the Old Fish Hatchery wants to use donations to install educational signage about the importance of the nature area and the decades-long investment the community has made.

After the plants were removed, District 9 City Councilwoman Paula Blackmon put together an advisory committee, co-chaired by District 9 Park Board Representative Maria Hasbany, to address the communication breakdown between Oncor and the city and to come up with a restoration plan for the area.

The committee recommended the planting of low-growth Blackland prairie and emergent wetland species, as well as discouraging taller species.

A friends group was created to oversee the restoration and help maintain the area with cleanup and invasive species removal. In April, the group coordinated a volunteer day to plant seedlings grown at Texas Discovery Gardens and scatter Blackland prairie seeds on levee slopes. Replanting began in March.

Neighbors are asked not to enter the are while replanting is ongoing. The entire dam project is expected to be completed summer 2022.

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