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Spirit Park

  • Subject: [cg] Spirit Park
  • From: Jeneva Storme jenevastorme@yahoo.ca
  • Date: Mon, 11 Aug 2003 16:57:57 -0400 (EDT)

Okay, the online Free Press only keeps things up for
seven days, so it was too late to copy the article on
our Spirit Park project, but I'll type it out with my
lightning-fast fingers.  I'll also spell my own name
right, which the author of the article couldn't be
bothered to do...

West Broadway group turns empty lots into green space

A group of West Broadway residents will take over four
weed-infested, city-owned lots and transform them into
community gardens, a tot lot and green space.

"It will improve the look of the area and when that
happens, it improves people's attitude toward the
area," said Langside Street resident Diane, whose
backyard overlooks three of the lots.  "When you see
people taking care and trying to improve the land, it
has an impact on the community.  I'm really excited
about the garden plots.

The four lots are on Langside and Young Street, just
north of Broadway.  The West Broadway Development
Corporation approached the city over a year ago about
acquiring the land.  Councillor Jenny Gerbasi
initiated a community consultation process that
concluded residents wanted green space.  The city,
which was considering offers to put housing on the
lots, opted to side with the residents' request.

"This is an area that's bounded by Broadway, Portage
Avenue and Osborne Street and there isn't a single
playground in that area," said Ray Klassen, the city's
manager of housing development.  "There's a need for a
place for kids to play so they don't have to cross a
busy street."

The city has agreed to lease the lots for one dollar. 
The site will be formally known as Spirit Park. 
Jeneva Storme, greening coordinator for West Broadway,
said the lot on Langside will be developed as a tot
lot with playground equipment.  The three lots on
Young Street will consist of the community gardens and
the green space.  An architect developed formal
drawings for the site which includes a pathway that
links them all.  All four lots back onto the same
laneway that runs between Langside and Young.

Storme said there's been a lot of interest among area
residents for the garden plots, which will measure
about eight metres by two metres.  Saskatoon berry and
current bushes will be planted on the site, Storme
said, adding they'll be free for the picking to anyone
who wanders through.  (edit: the author neglected to
mention the native prairie flowers and grasses
selected as food and habitat for butterflies, birds
and other wildlife.)

Paul Chorney, executive director of West Broadway
Development Corporation, said the project has a budget
of $85,000 which was provided by Neighbourhoods
Alive!, Councillor Jenny Gerbasi, four different
foundations, and Investor's Group.  Tenders have gone
out for the site preparation, Chorney said, adding he
expects the playground equipment and park site to be
completed by the end of summer.  Plots in the
community garden will be distributed next year.

Greening West Broadway Coordinator
"Neighbourhood Solutions for Community Change"

West Broadway Development Corporation
640 Broadway, Winnipeg, MB  R3C 0X3
phone: 774-3534  fax: 779-2203
website: http://www.westbroadway.mb.ca

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