Friday, October 30, 2009

Idea to plant community garden atop new library taking root

Grass Roots: Idea to plant community garden atop new library taking root

Pat Schneider Posted: Wednesday, October 28, 2009 7:30 am (3) Comments

Could a new library building be a source of nourishment for the body as well as the mind?
A grass-roots Madison group is working to make the idea blossom. The Downtown Community Gardens Group is hosting a public meeting Thursday to spread information and stimulate discussion on a proposal to put a community garden on top of the proposed six-story, $37 million library at West Washington Avenue and Henry Street.

A presentation on rooftop gardens starts at 7 p.m. Thursday in Room 204 of the current Central Library, 201 W. Mifflin St. An open Q&A session will follow.

Urban rooftop gardens are springing up all over the United States. To the south, Chicago sells honey from beehives on the City Hall's expansive rooftop garden. To the east, Milwaukee is home to a rooftop community supported agriculture garden, whose origin you can learn about here. The Kansas City, MO public library, in a converted bank building, boasts an ornamental garden on its roof.

To find out if a rooftop garden on the new Madison library is feasible, the group already asked prospective developer Fiore Cos. for estimates on the cost. But for the idea take root, it will take grass-roots support from Madisonians dedicated to expanding the city's tradition of community gardens as the urban agriculture movement flourishes.

So come out to the meeting, send your ideas to library officials, and let your City Council representative know what you'd like to see happen.

Like the downtown community gardeners say: "Local food is the wave of the future, and in the urban environment the sky's the limit." Love that slogan.

Posted in Grassroots on Wednesday, October 28, 2009 7:30 am Updated: 6:59 am. Blog, Downtown Library, Community Gardens

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