Source: Local Futures
Cities and towns contain significant amounts of abandoned and often abused land that lies idle and vacant. If communities organize to gain legal access and tenure to these plots, they can transform them into vibrant food gardens and community spaces that will benefit current and future generations.
- Project for Public Spaces’ article How to Bring Life to Vacant Lots contains lots of international examples, ideas, and resources for transforming underutilized land into vibrant community spaces.
- See model legal documents and case studies on ChangeLab Solutions’ guide Dig, Eat, and Be Healthy: A Guide to Growing Food on Public Property (US).
- Create an interactive online map of vacant lands in your city and get connected to others to transform them into productive community gardens and centers with 596 Acres’ resources Bring Our Tools to Your City and their model project, Living Lots NYC (US and Canada).
- The Land Access Advocacy Network – a project started by 596 Acres – comprises dozens of groups in the US and five other countries, all working to make vacant land more available to communities.
- The Homegrown Minneapolis Garden Lease Program in Minneapolis, US allows nonprofits to rent vacant city-owned land for one dollar per year.
- The CountyDigs program in Multnomah County, Oregon, US, donates foreclosed properties to organizations starting community gardens.
- Community groups in Athens, Greece, responded to the 2008 economic crisis by transforming abandoned spaces into collective kitchens, community parks, and more.
- Lots of Food in Louisville, Kentucky, US, has transformed 5 contiguous vacant lots into a 1/3 acre market garden and orchard.
- Alleycat Acres in Seattle, US, transforms undeveloped streets into community gardens, and installs edible walking trails along public corridors and “farmlets” in parking strips across the city.