The following text is based on an email written by Peta Christensen from Cultivating Community. Having helped build a community garden on Victoria St, I am annoyed and dismayed by this new plan.

The City of Yarra have recently released their Community Gardens Report (this is NOT available on the City of Yarra consultation webpage as of 8 August 2009), which looks at increasing community garden space in Yarra. This is fantastic but they also propose to remove many of the street food gardens that have popped up across the municipality.

Update 10 August 2009: the Community Gardens report is contained in the Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Committee meeting agenda of 4 August 2009 (6.6mb PDF, starts on p289).

The report also proposes that residents be allowed to grow ornamental plants but not food plants in nature strips and traffic treatments amongst other things.

If you would like to see more food grown in public spaces across the City of Yarra then come along and have your say and show the council that many people are concerned about community food security and the importance of urban agriculture in the city.

Meeting Details: Tuesday 18th August, 7pm, Fitzroy Town Hall.

Please pass this message onto your neighbours / workmates / family / friends etc – the more people that show up and show they care the better!

Perhaps we can put our heads together to think up ways to grow more food in public spaces and limit issues of public liability and safety!

City of Yarra proposes to remove community gardens from Fitzroy streets

8 thoughts on “City of Yarra proposes to remove community gardens from Fitzroy streets

  • 8 August 2009 at 11:25 am
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    What a damn shame!
    Was hoping this would spread across suburbs and become the norm rather than the exception.
    In Britain some churches have given over their unused spaces for community gardens, is that a possibility in Fitzroy?

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  • 13 August 2009 at 5:56 pm
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    Thanks for the heads-up.
    BTW, the link to “Cultivating Community” at the start of the article is broken.

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  • 24 August 2009 at 1:52 pm
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    I attended the council meeting last Tuesday night for the 2.5 hour debate with regards to the community gardens. Don’t be so defeatist (you should have seen the attendance!) they are not going to remove the gardens; in fact they are going to approve a committee to support the “guerilla garden” movement. I’m surprised you didn’t come along to defend the garden you built on Vic Street!

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  • 24 August 2009 at 1:52 pm
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    I was not able to attend due to prior committments. Reading the documentation released by council (see link above) formed the grounds for my pessimism. I’m pleased to hear the meeting was positive.

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  • 24 August 2009 at 4:29 pm
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    The council states in a 21 August media release that:

    Council resolved to place a moratorium on the removal of existing “guerrilla” gardens, community gardens and planter boxes.

    Further consultation will also occur as council:

    committed to establish a Community Gardens Advisory Committee which would include members of the local community, Councillors and Council officers.

    The Committee has been set the task of developing simple and clear guidelines for the establishment and management of community garden activities, with an emphasis on minimising any risk of toxicity associated with growing food in community gardens.

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  • 25 August 2009 at 12:05 pm
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    I think a lot of food plants are quite ornamental as well. A loophole?

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    • 25 August 2009 at 12:07 pm
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      The point is that food plants have a potential health risk if grown in contaminated soil.

      Reply

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