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City of Seattle

Seattle City Council
NEWS ADVISORY

SUBJECT:  Vacant Lot To Become Urban Oasis
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:   
4/25/2003  9:20:00 AM
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Phyllis Shulman, 206 684-8805

Vacant Lot To Become Urban Oasis

Community garden is a community effort

SEATTLE – At last, years after being identified as a high priority in the neighborhood, Maple Leaf and the Northgate area will have a community garden. This week an agreement was signed by the heirs to the property owner and the City for the purchase of a vacant lot on NE 103rd just east of 5th Ave. NE. The property is close to numerous apartments and condominiums, an ideal location for residents who need garden space.

"The community is thrilled to know that this site will be preserved as open space and will soon be developed into a community garden where neighbors can grow produce and also make new friends," commented Barbara Maxwell, a Maple Leaf resident who led the planning effort. "It has been a longstanding dream since this property was first nominated for acquisition by the Maple Leaf Community Council in 1988."

"We have worked collaboratively with the neighborhood for the last four years to make this happen. It took a tremendous amount of persistence, creativity and dogged fundraising by the neighbors. I celebrate their success and can’t wait to help them pull up weeds," said City Councilmember Richard Conlin.

The Maple Leaf Community Council developed the initial design for the community garden. The funding for the land purchase is a combination of money from a Neighborhood Matching Grant, a Pro Parks Levy Opportunity Grant, the King County Conservation Futures Fund and private donations.

"Many people contributed to the effort," said Conlin. "City staff did an amazing job of pulling this all together. In particular, Deirdre Grace of the Department of Neighborhoods and Lise Ward and other staff in the Parks Department were highly instrumental in helping to achieve one of this neighborhood’s dreams."

Together with ongoing construction of a library branch and community center, the garden will represent further steps toward implementing a pedestrian-friendly neighborhood revitalization that was envisioned in the community plan developed throughout the 1990s.

The property sale should be finalized in August.

-30-

Seattle City Council

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