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PROCEDURES FOR THE LONG-TERM STABILITY OF COMMUNITY GARDENS

PROCEDURES FOR THE LONG-TERM STABILITY OF COMMUNITY GARDENS

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Published by: Zafiriou Mavrogianni on Dec 02, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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02/03/2012

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UMMARY
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XECUTIVE
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UMMARY
 
Milwaukee Urban Gardens (MUG), a two-year-old non-profit organization in the city thatadvocates the use of land for community gardens in the urban environment through theassemblage of a land trust, would like to make community gardens a more permanent part of the urban landscape. No policy currently exists in Milwaukee that specifically recognizescommunity gardens as having a place in the urban environment. MUG identified this as a chief concern in the promotion, advancement and security of community gardens in Milwaukee, andapproached the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee’s Department of Urban Planning to see if aclass would take this on as a special project. This report reflects the findings andrecommendations resultant of that request.This report contains a body of research relating community gardening in Milwaukee to other cities in the nation. The Problem Statement identifies current issues facing Milwaukee UrbanGardens (MUG) and the hurdles facing this organization in getting policies passed to protect thepermanent status of community gardens in Milwaukee. The context provided in this ProblemStatement helps identify objectives for MUG and for this paper.In the next section, Brief History of Community Gardening, an examination of communitygardening in the United States relates Milwaukee to the larger established history of communitygardening. It also discusses the current status of gardening in Milwaukee and provides insightinto the supply, the demand, and the users of Milwaukee community gardens. This review of community gardening in Milwaukee led to discussions with citizens, developers, gardeners, andplanners in Milwaukee about the three areas of concerns for community gardening. They wereidentified as maintenance, insurance, and criminal activity and safety. Each of these isdiscussed in detail, and where appropriate solutions are provided.The next major section deals with the wide variety of benefits community gardens provide to theneighborhood and its users. These benefits are quantified for community gardens positiveeffect on the surrounding properties and economic benefits provided to users. Also, there are anumber of soft values provided by community gardens. Benefits include the solidification of thesocial fabric of the neighborhood, accumulated environmental impacts, and positive effects for 
 
 
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individual on health, education, nutrition, and additional economic benefits. Establishing themany benefits of Milwaukee community gardens is crucial to the implementation of protectingpolicies.A review of community gardening and community gardening policies in other cities provides acontrasting point of view when implementing policies for Milwaukee. Community gardens in 6Midwestern cities and 5 cities with populations at or below Milwaukee are used to compare rawnumber of gardens, gardens per ten-thousand people, and policy review. Polices are reviewedin terms of their effectiveness and are ordered least effective to most effective.With this policy review in mind, the next section takes selected policies that were deemed tohave the most effect for Milwaukee. They are reviewed and scored for consistency with thestated objectives and criterion of the project.In the final section of the paper Procedures for the Future are identified for MUG. They are:1. Add Community Gardens As A Permitted Use In The Zoning Code2. Add A Definition Of Community Gardens To The Zoning Code3. Reestablish The Garden CoalitionA. Adopt Community Gardens into The Comprehensive PlanB. Create a Model LeaseC. Map Out Potential Garden Sites in Cooperation With The CityD. Pursue The Addition of Compensation Language to the Model Lease

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