During the summers, I always look forward to my neighbours boulevard vegetable garden. She made great use of wasted space by doing something that I consider wonderful - growing her own food, brightening up the neighbourhood, and encouraging people by example.
For the past few days, I’ve noticed news crews on our street. I guess the battle continues with the city’s anti-everything-good reign (I know that’s a little dramatic, but there have been some questionable decisions made lately…at least from my standpoint).
The city decided to enforce the by-law that restricts people from growing vegetables on the city owned boulevard…even though homeowners are required to maintain that area.
Check out the full story here - http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/story/2013/06/11/mb-garden-tomato-rip-order-flowers-veggies-boulevard.html
A few people have brought up some good points, so here are some things to consider:
- What happens if the a boulevard garden is damaged by a city owned vehicle (like a snow plow)?
- Currently, if someone is injured on the boulevard they can take recourse with the city. If this injury is due to a garden (tripping over large plants/fixtures, getting sick from picking and eating fruit, etc.), should the city be liable?
- How do other cities that allow urban foraging on government owned land deal with liability issues?
- Why are homeowners expected to maintain the boulevard if they can’t take ownership of it?
- Is fair to only enforce the by-law on a house-by-house basis when a complaint has been made? Should it be all or none?
- If complaints drive enforcement, should the homeowner be allowed to petition for dismissal?