So What About All These Community Gardens?

Report
So What About All These Community Gardens?
The City of Flagstaff’s
Experience with
Community Gardens
Roger E. Eastman, AICP, Comprehensive Planning and
Code Administrator
Nicole A. Woodman, Sustainability Manager
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Supported by City Policy and Code?
• 2001 Flagstaff Regional Land Use and Transportation
Plan, April 2001
• Silent on community gardens and local agriculture
• Urban Growth Boundary = no more sprawl!
• ARS requires review and re-adoption every 10 years.
• 2014 Flagstaff Regional Plan 2030, May 22, 2014
• Food policy recommendations submitted
• Last minute revisions and edits
• Result – also silent on community gardens and local
agriculture!
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Supported by City Policy and Code?
• 2014 Flagstaff Regional Plan 2030
• Goal ED3: Regional economic development partners
support the start-up, retention, and expansion of existing
business enterprises.
• Policy ED 3.7: Support and encourage regional
agriculture.
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Supported by City Policy and Code?
• 2011 Flagstaff Zoning Code, November 1, 2011
• Former Land Development Code was complex,
inconsistent, hard-to-use, and disliked by all
• And it did not allow community gardens
• New Zoning Code adopted after 3.5 years of broad-based
community participation
• Success at providing for local food production – be
innovative!
• Community gardens now specifically allowed.
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Supported by City Policy and Code?
• 2011 Flagstaff Zoning Code, November 1, 2011
• Section 10-40.60.140 Community Gardens
• Land used for cultivation of fruits, vegetables, plants, flowers, or
herbs by multiple users
• Water supply required – support cultivation practices on site
• Operating rules and a garden coordinator – responsible
• Specifically allowed on roof tops
• No drainage to downstream properties
• No retail sales; but produce from the garden may be sold
• Shed to store tools and green houses – 120 sq. ft. max.
• Maintenance required
• In unmaintained or abandoned for >12 months, then landscaped.
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Supported by City Policy and Code?
• 2011 Flagstaff Zoning Code, November 1, 2011
• Section 10-50.60.140 Landscaping Standards
• Food production sites (vegetable gardens) excluded from
landscape standards
• Oasis standards do not apply to community gardens
• Edible landscape plants are permitted.
• Section 10-40.30.050 Industrial Zones
• Allows food production and composting facilities.
• Future amendments – more explicitly allow local food production
in all zones.
Roger E. Eastman, AICP, Comprehensive Planning and Code Administrator
[email protected]
(928) 213-2640
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Sowing Seeds in Flagstaff
• 1st community garden established as a “pilot” in
2009
•
•
•
•
Community desire
Vacant City property
High density neighborhood
Public transit route
• Launched Community Agriculture Project in 2010
• Community gardens promote sustainable communities
by providing locally grown food and building a sense of
community
• Partnered with Flagstaff Foodlink to manage
existing garden and future gardens in 2010
• 2nd garden established as a “pilot” in 2010
• 3rd garden established in 2012 – property donated
to the City as an educational site
• In 2013 community action helped establish 4th and
5th gardens
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Being Creative and Resourceful
• Permit Agreement for operating a
recreational community garden
• Community garden participant waiver,
release and hold harmless agreement
• Rules and guidelines for community gardens
on City property
• Analysis of all City owned property to identify
future gardens – gardens that would stay
gardens
• Community grants and volunteers funded a
majority of infrastructure, labor and supplies
• Partnered with Affordable Housing Section on
Izabel and O’Leary gardens
So What About All These Community Gardens?
So What About All These Community Gardens?
So What About All These Community Gardens?
To this
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Building Community
• Community empowerment
• Long term commitment
• Work with neighborhood
before breaking ground
• No fencing
• Group or individual plots
• Senior and children plots
• Organic design
• Summer workshop series
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Lessons Learned
• Neighborhood needs may
surprise you
• Community partners are
critical to success
• Reporting impact can be
challenging
• What to measure? Pounds?
Bushels? Money saved during
growing season?
• Infrastructure is expensive
So What About All These Community Gardens?
Nicole A. Woodman
[email protected]
928.213.2149
www.facebook.com/FlagstaffSustainabilityProgram
www.flagstaff.az.gov/gardens

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