Campbellton group seeking input on community garden

Campbellton Neighbourhood Association wants to gauge community's temperature on developing a community garden

After going to City Council with a proposal for a community garden in Campbellton, the Neighbourhood Association is hoping the idea takes root with the community.

Residents are invited to attend an organizational meeting for a new community garden Feb. 18 from 6-7 p.m. at Ryan’s Pizzeria.

The community garden, which could feature up to 50 raised beds, is proposed for Campbellton Park, near the corner of 15th Ave. and Peterson.

“Our focus is on integrating the playground into the space and adding fencing around it to keep out deer and provide security for families who want to bring young children,” said Brian Shaw, co-chair of the Neighbourhood Association.

“We want to make it a bit of a social area.”

To make this vision a reality, however, the community will need to agree it wants a community garden.

Shaw said the city has made a commitment to utilize existing green space throughout Campbell River, and City Coordinator Linda Nagel is working with Shaw and the association on the proposed community garden project.

“This is the first time we’ve really pushed on a community garden,” said Shaw.

“We haven’t gone to the community with it yet, but we’re sending out a pamphlet to locals saying the same thing we told the city.”

He said Greenways Land Trust, which administers the community garden in Willow Point, has provided unofficial confirmation it would be willing to consider administering a prospective Campbellton garden.

“If there’s no real interest, though, why do it?” Shaw asked.

“We need a champion to make it happen, we need community consent to make it happen, and we need the support of all the community to push it forward.”

With the community garden still in a proposal stage, there is no dedicated funding.

But Shaw envisions people working to secure grants and subsidies, and some combination of funding and in-kind support from the corporate sector.

“This would be a nice project for a business to have its name attached to, if it was willing to, say, share some fencing it happened to have in the back of its shop,” Shaw said.