Back to the garden : promoting sustainable communities by incorporating community gardens into city planning processes
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City leaders and residents are increasingly considering the need to address urban food provision. Community gardens are one aspect of the urban food system that is seeing a resurgence of popularity and support. Although not intended to replace market-based food streams or the federal food safety net, these gardens can provide many benefits to their communities besides increased food security and access to fresh produce. They can encourage community development, especially in struggling areas, by serving as tools for addressing community issues. Because they are effective uses of open space, cities should consider supporting the development of community gardens. Along with a literature review to show the potential benefits of community gardens, this report uses case study research to show the adaptability of community gardens in meeting communities’ diverse needs. Cleveland, Ohio and San Francisco, California were selected to show how community garden provision is addressed in two greatly differing cities. They provide examples of how community gardens can succeed in many types of urban environments.
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