The City of Edmonton has launched a new program that will help beautify residential boulevards.
The Residential Boulevard Gardening Kickstart Program allows Edmontonians to plant their own garden in underutilized strips of grass between sidewalks and roads.
“I think they are really pretty,” Hazeldean resident Marissa Adie said. “I think they add a nice touch to the neighbourhood.”
“They make things so much more beautiful,” another resident Lou Remesz said.
Ward O-day’min Coun. Anne Stevenson has been advocating for this program, saying this is much needed for people without access to green spaces.
“It has no resource implication. This is one of the great benefits,” Coun. Stevenson said. “This is an asset that already exists, it won’t be an additional cost to the city to just open up these spaces for availability.”
People wanting to plant a basic garden in a green space between their sidewalk and road can apply for a permit.
There is immediate approval and the annual fee is waived for this year and 2023.
More details will be required for a permit for a more robust garden. There is a $75 fee, but again, it’s waived for this year and next.
“I’m really hopeful that this new program highlights that this is something people can choose to do if they are waiting on a community garden plot,” Coun. Stevenson said. “They can instead have one on a boulevard potentially.”
Coun. Stevenson said there was a garden program in the past, but it was difficult for people to navigate and get approval.
“This new program provides a lot more clarity there and a lot more opportunities for people to make transformative changes to those spaces.”
Changes Adie welcomes.
“Most of the people in this neighbourhood are gardeners,” she said. “So I think them getting to put a little bit of their personal touch to the neighbourhood, for everybody, is a good idea.”
Applications can be made on the city’s website.