ATHENS, Tenn. - A giant green thumbs up goes to DENSO Manufacturing Athens Tennessee as it makes way to establish a community EcoPark adjacent to its Athens, Tennessee property. DENSO is partnering with the City of Athens Parks and Recreation and the McMinn County Economic Development Authority to develop an 11.5 acre EcoPark that creates a safe place for employees and the community to walk, learn and immerse themselves in nature. The EcoPark will be developed on land owned and set aside by the McMinn County Economic Development Authority and will be completed in three phases with the first phase targeted for completion in late October 2015.
“DENSO grew up in rural Japan, and preserving the environment has long been a part of our heritage. So, we wanted to develop an EcoPark that demonstrates DENSO’s Japanese heritage while also creating an eco-friendly and educational oasis for employees and community,” said Shawn Bryant, manager of Safety, Health and Environment at DENSO Manufacturing Athens Tennessee. “We hope that one day we can take kids from all around the area and teach them different ways to help protect the environment through the EcoPark.”
Completion of EcoPark in Three Phases:
Phase one will include an outdoor, Japanese-style pavilion and picnic area, which can serve as a meeting area for employees and outdoor classroom for students. This phase will also establish a half mile walking trail and Japanese fruit orchard to celebrate the Japanese culture and teach students about food sustainability. The phase should be completed by Oct. 31, 2015.
Phase two will focus on renewable energy through the use of windmill and solar panels. Once completed, DENSO plans to sell the green electricity to fund future activities and upkeep as well as to make donations to environmental activities. This phase should be completed in late 2016. Phase three will include a natural pond with natural plant filtering that will create a healthy sanctuary for wildlife and demonstrate water sustainability. Completion of this phase is targeted late 2017.
The DENSO EcoPark will be a great learning and relaxation environment for the community, but DENSO cannot do it alone. Some grants will fund projects, like the wetlands restoration for the natural pond, but other grants are still needed. DENSO is also looking for community partners to help bring the concept to its highest potential. If you are interested in helping DENSO and the City of Athens, please contact Shawn Lindsey, Public Works Director for the City of Athens, by phone at (423) 744-2746 or through fax at (423) 744-2772 for more information.
DENSO Corporation, headquartered in Kariya, Aichi prefecture, Japan, is a leading global automotive supplier of advanced technology, systems and components in the areas of thermal, powertrain control, electronics and information and safety. Its customers include all the world's major carmakers. Worldwide, the company has more than 200 subsidiaries and affiliates in 38 countries and regions and employs nearly 140,000 people. Consolidated global sales for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2014, totaled US$39.8 billion. Last fiscal year, DENSO spent 9.0 percent of its global consolidated sales on research and development. DENSO common stock is traded on the Tokyo and Nagoya stock exchanges.
About DENSO in North America:
Currently, in North America, DENSO employs more than 17,000 people at 33 consolidated companies and affiliates. Of these, 28 are manufacturing facilities located in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. In the U.S. alone, DENSO employs more than 14,000 people in California, Alabama, Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Iowa, Ohio, Arkansas, and Pennsylvania. DENSO’s North American consolidated sales totaling US$7.9 billion for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2014.
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