Midland Boardwalk Build

In just four days, Trinseo Midland volunteers constructed a new nature trail boardwalk, offering local students more access to science education.

Floyd Elementary is located in one of the most economically challenged areas in Midland County, Michigan, USA. The Trinseo Midland office has been proud to support school initiatives that help set the students for success later in life, including a summer reading program.

As part of the school’s science curriculum, Floyd Elementary students have access to an on-site nature trail, but a significant portion of the trail has not been accessible due to a vernal pool (seasonal wetland) that forms during certain times of the year. A boardwalk for the nature trail has been a well-known need in the Midland community for more than seven years, but resources were not identified until Trinseo stepped in.

“We initially believed it would take two full weeks, 80 hours, and approximately 120 volunteers to complete construction of the 160-foot boardwalk,” said Garret Fox, polystyrene operations leader at Trinseo, and leader of the boardwalk project. “It took our 24 dedicated and hardworking volunteers 285 hours and just four days to complete the project, far exceeding our expectations. From drilling post holes amongst tree roots and thick clay dirt, setting posts, framework, and decking, our team worked diligently to ensure students could enjoy the boardwalk for a long time to come.”

Our team worked diligently to ensure students could enjoy the boardwalk for a long time to come.

The project was completed in plenty of time to hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Floyd’s annual Halloween Walk event on the trail. Hundreds of children and their families came out in costume — prepared with boots to slip and slide through the mud that families had grown accustomed to before the boardwalk — but were overjoyed to walk across the beautiful new boardwalk.

The Trinseo Midland team has since received many expressions of personal thanks from members of the community, from parents and faculty and staff, to more than 70 adorable handmade cards and letters from students.

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