More Community Gardens in North Vancouver

Produce from a Community Garden     Two new community gardens have been approved by the District of North Vancouver council after a lengthy debate. The gardens will be located at the Lynn Valley recreation centre as well as Garibaldi Park.

    The new gardens in Lynn Valley will house somewhere between 30 and 30 plots in a 3700 square foot area adjacent to Frederick Road, and the Garibaldi Park gardens which will be located beside the existing tennis courts will provide approximately 45 garden plots in a 5800 square foot area.

    Some council members expressed concern about the new proposal citing a limited amount of field space for kids programs and sports, as well as citing the cost of giving away land which has a high value. Furthermore, there council members express concern that tax payers are subsidizing the community gardens for the enjoyment of a limited number of North Vancouver residents.

North Vancouver Community Garden     Conversely, Mayor Richard Walton strongly supports the approval, saying “I’d like to see ten-thousand community gardens in North Van.” A notion likely supported by organizations such as the North Shore Community Garden Society, who strive to “promote well-being by providing access to garden space and to public gathering spaces.

     Council members further debated the role of community gardens in providing locally grown produce to help feed the population, referencing water shortages in California.  There is no doubt that in the future, locally produced foods will no longer be viewed as a green-friendly option but will be the norm. Community gardens are a stepping stone in that direction, allowing local residents of North Vancouver homes to get their hands dirty and produce something naturally and organically right in their own community.

     There may also come a time when most North Vancouver homes make use of their own properties to grow fruits and vegetables in the backyard in order to cut down on the need to import foods. In a world that is increasingly environmentally conscious, and a generation of young adults who place a greater and greater importance on green initiatives than that of the generation before them, it is not unreasonable to make such predictions.

     With this in mind, should we be concerned that the District of North Vancouver has allocated less than 10,000 square feet of city land to go towards community gardens? Many would regard this as a highly appropriate allocation of land, given these growing concerns of sustainability and the heightened awareness of ramifications associated with shipping food around the world.

The Community Garden at North Vancouver City Hall     Many owners of North Vancouver homes view community gardens with a positive frame of mind, associating them with parks and green space, something which has traditionally increased land value of Real Estate in North Vancouver. Having a property situated in close proximity to a park or community garden will be viewed by most prospective buyers of North Vancouver homes as an added value when compared to other homes located away from green space.

    Make no mistake that North Vancouver homeowners and organizations such as the North Shore Community Garden Society are not finished making proposals for further allocation of garden space, and it will not be far into the future that we will hear additional announcements such as this.

Photos courtesy of the North Shore Community Garden Society.