Vermont's village greens lay at the physical and cultural heart of our communities. Located historically where roads converged, where meetinghouses were established, where commerce was concentrated and homes clustered, village greens hold a special place in community life. Greens are open spaces around which community life has developed. The historical, civic, spiritual, and economic life of the community is often represented in the buildings around the green. Village greens are a gathering place, a place for the community to observe tradition and celebrate holidays. The green is part of a larger ensamble of townscape elements that provide citizens with a sense of time and place.
Currently inactive, the Vermont Village Greens Initiative was an integrated project focused on restoring awareness and understanding of the cultural, economic, and historical value that village greens provide to our state. This project was a collaboration of the Vermont Downtown Program under the Vermont Agency of Commerce & Community Development, VT UCF, and the Preservation Trust of Vermont.
The Vermont Village Greens Initiative began in the fall of 2013 and explored the physical and cultural significance of village greens through:
- Service-learning projects in five service-learning courses at UVM, engaging over 60 undergraduate students and focusing on 18 village greens;
- A year-long VT UCF internship focused on this intiative and a comprehensive report of Vermont's village greens;
- A summer internship through the Agency of Commerce & Community Development focused on developing village green maps and case studies of village greens statewide; and
- A comprehensive data layer of the locations of Vermont's village greens on the Agency of Natural Resources' Atlas online mapping tool.