Community Gardens: The queue explodes downtown

According to data requested by Radio-Canada, the waiting list for one of 17 community parks in downtown Quebec City increased from 413 names in 2019 to 2,380 names this year, an increase of 476%. This data is limited to community parks operated by Quebec City.

The epidemic is seen as one possible reason for the increasing demand for community gardens.

Photo: Radio Canada/Raymond Rother

There were already signs of this rush to urban parks last year, in the midst of a pandemic, when orders for a lot in La-Cité-Limoilou increased dramatically.

New orders have increased since 2018, but orders have jumped significantly in 2020, likely due to the epidemicDavid O’Brien, a Quebec City spokesperson, confirms.

Applications for the purchase of a plot of land in La-Cité-Limoilou park حديقة

2018 : 293 requests

2019 : 414 requests

2020 : 802 requests (51.62% increase compared to 2019)

2021 : 589 requests

sum : 2098 requests

Source: Quebec City

Mad for urban farming

The municipal administration notes an unprecedented enthusiasm for gardening among the residents. Often without a front or back yard, residents of central neighborhoods especially covet a community or communal plot.

We add that the trend goes beyond the average citizen. Urban farming is booming all over the world. It’s the same in Quebec. Companies, organizations and urban agricultural projects have multiplied across the regionO’Brien says.

Gardens in front of the Parliament building in Quebec

Community and group gardens in Quebec have doubled in recent years (archive).

Photo: Radio Canada / Jean-Francois Nadeau

Quebec City says it is sensitive to this reality and would like to contribute for quality of life By improving the display in its territory. It also adopted the Urban Agriculture Action Plan for the period 2020-2025, which contains a series of actions aimed at improving access to land.

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This action plan is itself complementary to a vision for the development of agricultural and agricultural activities approved in 2015. This vision wanted to bring agriculture back to the city and thus develop urban agriculture.David O’Brien identifies.

congestion everywhere

In the wake of these initiatives, Quebec City has increased the number of lots available in its community parks, as well as opening new parks. For 2021 alone, the city opened four new parks on its land, increasing the capacity of 341 small plots.

But at the moment, it is still unable to meet the demand. The queue in La-Cité-Limoilou alone, which includes half the parks, exceeds the number of plots available for all 34 community parks scattered across the city grounds.

The number of gardeners is currently estimated at 2,000 in Quebec. There were only 700 in 2016.

Data from other queues, which are managed individually, cannot be aggregated by Radio Canada.

New projects are scheduled to be announced in December for the 2022 season.

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