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Community Garden Content Advisory: NYC: Harlem Negotiations toSave Community Gardens

  • Subject: [cg] Community Garden Content Advisory: NYC: Harlem Negotiations toSave Community Gardens
  • From: adam36055@aol.com
  • Date: Sat, 16 Sep 2006 12:09:02 -0400

Reader content advisory: For persons  interested in  reading about  how
committed people in communities of color and their allies engage with the
representatives of the elected officials and the development communities to
create win-wins for this inner-city constituency - housing AND gardens.

These minutes from Aresh Jehadi of MORE GARDENS!

Best regards,
Adam Honigman

-----Original Message-----
From: aresh@moregardens.org
To: aresh@moregardens.org
Sent: Sat, 16 Sep 2006 2:16 AM
Subject: Meeting of HUG (Harlem United Gardens), Councilmember Melisa Mark
Viverito, and Director of GreenThumb Edie Stone

Meeting of HUG (Harlem United Gardens), Councilmember Melisa Mark Viverito,
and Director of GreenThumb Edie Stone
September 1, 2006

HUG met at Councilwoman Melissa Mark-Viverito's office, with Director of
GreenThumb Edie Stone, and More Gardens! Coalition. The HUG community gardens
present were "Nueva Esperanza", "116 Block Association", "Pueblo Unido", "El
Gallo Social Club", "Magic Garden" and "La Cuevita".

Melissa Mark-Viverito presented a list of 19  GreenThumb gardens under HPD and
HPD plans  for development. HUG working  with alongside with More Gardens!
gave to the Councilperson the request from all the gardens. The list included
most endangered gardens and those recently bulldozed. Melissa with the
assistance of Edie went through the gardens on the list and identified the
developers and the best strategies to preserve them. The Councilperson stated
that was important to maintain the gardens which are functioning according to
GreenThumb rules and separate them from  those that do not.

Aresh Javadi displayed a map of all the council districtbs green spaces
including community gardens which are endangered, permanent, bulldozed as well
as vacant land.

In conversations with the HPD the priority will be to preserve and maintain
the gardens where they are.  The challenge will be with the gardens where
there are developers already appointed.  Melissa will be requesting meetings
with the developer, and negotiating with HPD.  One alternative is to build
higher buildings and preserve the gardens where they are.

These are the meetings she will be requesting:
1.    bNueva Esperanzab and the African Museum of Arts.
2.    b116 Block Associationb/ bFlower Garden # 1b and Yuco
3.    bYoung Devils Inc.b and
4.    bEl Gallob and Hope Developers
5.    bLa Cuevitab and Vac 2000/Loewen
6.    bMagic Gardenb and EDC
7.    All remaining gardens to be kept with the development.

Aresh Javadi, gave an example of the Melrose community gardens and their
preservation in the South Bronx. He also explained how they published the
"Homes with Gardens" book, and how the HUG gardens are working to create a
similar portfolio as well.

Melissa will be asking HPD about the list of the GreenThumb gardens not
included on the list.
The six gardens are:
Carrie McCracken Garden/TRUCE,
Jirasol Association,
Magic Garden,
Perla del Sur Grupo PonceC1o,
Pueblo Unido,
United Block Association Garden.

Aresh Javadi will coordinate the actions and conversations between the
councilperson and the gardeners.

Melissa will request a map of all the vacant HPD lots.

HUG Benefit Party: October 21, 2006
Oda Jilberto of More Gardens! requested Melissa  to obtain a space for
celebrating this event.  Melissa reports that the Julia Burgos Latin Cultural
Center would cost $400.  Olga Seijo will enquire about another Center.

Councilperson next meeting with HUG is on Wednesday October 4th, at 6:00 pm at
her office.

Melissa offered her office for future HUG meetings, especially in Autumn and

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