Brookhaven, GA, May 10, 2017 – by Trey Benton – Because of the lack of any policy at present, Brookhaven leaders are thinking about implementing a framework to formalize how residents go about requesting space for their Community Garden, how the City and the community will work with each other, what can be done in the space and when, and who is responsible for what.
Two parks in the City of Brookhaven have Community Gardens presently – Blackburn Park and Briarwood Park, but according to Parks and Recreation Director Brian Borden, in the last few months several interested parties have contacted the City about the possibility of building a community garden on park and FEMA city-owned property.
“This policy when adopted by the Council will help set the standards for operating Community Gardens,” Borden told Councilmembers Tuesday. “The standards will include the definitions of what is associated with Community Gardens, organizational responsibilities, guidelines for use and user agreements. Groups that wish to have a Community Garden within our City must meet these standards.”
If the policy is passed by Council, an interested party would apply to the City for garden space. Attached to that application the City would require a letter of intent, a sketch of the garden layout, a signed letter of approval from the appropriate neighborhood association and a signed letter from the abutting property owner’s consent of the use of the land for a community garden.
The City says community gardens are valuable recreational and educational resources that contribute to community development, environmental awareness, positive social interaction and community education. But, they want to be sure people who apply and are granted City property for their garden are serious about it, can provide all of their own maintenance, pay for the power and water they use, and follow the other guidelines outlined in the below policy.
The City has not voted on whether to adopt the policy, and it is subject to change. At this point it is a discussion.