New tenants are moving into the Bank of America Tower and there is quite the buzz in City Center, downtown Fort Worth’s premier towers overlooking the skyline. City Center has partnered with Alvéole, a social beekeeping company, to bring a beehive to an outdoor space within City Club.
“We continually look for ways to make our community better and the partnership with Alvéole is certainly one of the more unique opportunities we have introduced,” said Johnny Campbell, president and CEO of City Center Management. “This is a long-term initiative that will make a positive impact on Fort Worth. It’s quite exciting to think we will be producing our very own honey before the end of the year.”
City Center hosted a “Name the Queen Bee Contest” with the winning entry from Guy Addeliar of Fort Worth who submitted the name, Queen Beeyoncé.
The beehive will house several thousand Italian bees, known for their very mild temperament, who will make their new home on the patio of City Center. The new tenants will pollinate the urban flora that surrounds Fort Worth during the summer. At the end of the season, the beekeepers will harvest the honey from the City Center location and then share it with the community in September.
While bees get a bad wrap, they really do not have an interest in human beings. With a single stinger, they only will sting if they feel their colony is threatened. The bees have one goal and that is to collect nectar and pollen from flowers within a three-mile radius of their hive, and bring it back to the hive to ensure the development of the colony.
Projects like this are needed as a result of the dwindling bee, butterfly, and bumble bee populations and other pollinators declining around the world. Pollinators face threats from industrial agriculture, such as the massive use of pesticides and habitat loss, as well as climate change.
Pollinators are responsible for the pollination of more than 130 varieties of fruit and vegetables, nearly a third of the food we eat. The installation of the beehive at City Center requires minimal resources, but will bring enormous direct and indirect benefits, notably social and ecological. This urban beehive will repurpose an unused space as well as educate the community when the beekeeper conducts two workshops in the coming months for interested guests.
Alvéole has partnered with more than 100 schools and 500 companies to create awareness about biodiversity, food production and ecosystems. Since its inauguration in 2013, Alvéole has reached more than 25,000 people of all ages through its beekeeping services and educational workshops.
City Center is the premier business address with Class A office space in downtown Fort Worth. Comprised of the Bank of America Tower and the Wells Fargo Tower, the two iconic towers offer stunning views of Fort Worth, connected parking and an on-site private club with fitness center.
BY THE NUMBERS AND INTERESTING FACTS
- At the height of the season, each hive contains up to 50,000 bees.
- Approximately 90% of the bees in the hive are workers (females), and 10% are drones (males).
- There is only one queen per hive, who can live up to five years and can lay up to 2,000 eggs per day.
- Bees fly the equivalent of four times the Earth’s circumference to produce two pounds of honey.
- Bees visit up to 4.5 million flowers to produce 2.2 pounds of honey.
- Each bee will produce about 1/8 teaspoon of honey in its entire lifetime.
- Honey can be stored indefinitely at room temperature because of its high sugar content.
- Each hive produces honey that reflects the ecosystem surrounding it. A hive’s honey encompasses flavors from each flower visited by the bees.
- Worker bees dedicate their lives to serving the colony. They will never leave it for another.
- Bees can see color, particularly blue, purple, and violet.
- Each worker bee lives from three to six weeks in the summer, and three to six months in the winter.
- Bees only eat nectar and pollen.
- During the winter, the bees will stay comfortable in the warmth of their hive, where they’ll maintain an internal temperature of up to 95 degrees Fahrenheit. To do so, they form a tight cluster around the queen and keep warm by contracting their thoracic muscles.
- When winter is over, strong hives are divided into several small ones – a bit like perennial plants, to distribute the hive’s strength and population size.