Last Fall, Brooklyn College announced plans to destroy the Campus Road Community Garden, located at the western end of Brooklyn College's athletic fields since 1997, for a parking lot. This Wednesday, February 24, the Brooklyn Community Board 14 Committee on Education, Libraries & Cultural Affairs is having a public hearing:
When: Wednesday, February 24, 2010, 7 PMThe "Brooklyn College Garden" is part of Brooklyn College's greenwashing campaign. On February 3, they posted this announcement (since removed) on their Web site:
Where: CB14 District Office, 810 E 16th Street, Brooklyn, NY
1. Update on Brooklyn College Garden – Representatives of Brooklyn College and South Midwood Residence Association
2. Presentation on Brooklyn Public Library initiatives – Tambe Tysha-John, Cluster Leader, Brooklyn Public Library
3. Other business
If you would like to speak during any of the public hearings or during the public portion of the board meeting, please call the CB14 District Office at 718-859-6357 to register for time. You may also register to speak on the evening of the meeting.
Brooklyn College announced today the creation of the Brooklyn College Garden that will serve as the basis for a broad spectrum of academic and sustainability initiatives for faculty and students. Members of the surrounding community will also be welcome to plant on individual plots, which will be assigned to them on a yearly base.which is where the Campus Road Garden, occupying more than twice the area, already exists.
The garden, to be situated at the campus’s Avenue H entrance and bordering the college’s athletic field, is designed to be approximately 2,500 square feet.
View Brooklyn Community Gardens in a larger map
Brooklyn College's unilateral announcement is disingenuous, at best. They omit any mention of their plans to destroy the Campus Road Garden, or the parking lot that will take its place. Such is the basis for their "sustainability initiatives."
Not content with destroying a garden with decades of history in the community, they plan to pick at its bones for their private benefit:
Trees and bushes from a temporary community garden that made use of the area in previous years will be carefully replanted in front of the West Quad Center to create an inviting new garden. The college envisions the new green space as a "serenity garden" with comfortable seating for visitors to linger.A garden that has been in place for 13 years is not a "temporary" garden.
Once again, the hearing is this Thursday, Wednesday, February 24, at 7pm, at the CB14 District Office at 810 E 16th Street.
A brief historyProvided by the Campus Road Garden:
- 1970s: Brooklyn College Organic Gardening Club starts a garden on a vacant college lot on Campus Road, sustained by community residents and students.
- 1980s: The City sells the lot at auction and evicts the gardeners. The developer defaults, and the lot remains vacant and overrun by weeds.
- 1990s: New Campus Road Garden Residents negotiate with the bank holding the property, and successfully recreate the garden. The bank again sells the lot and evicts the gardeners.
- 1997: Gardeners negotiate with Brooklyn College to relocate the garden to its current location. Then-President Vernon Lattin calls it "Brooklyn College's gain."
Related ContentSave the Campus Road Garden in Flatbush, 2009-10-07
South Midwood Garden Tour and Art Show, 2009-08-18
Other Gardens: South Midwood Garden Tour, 2006-07-30
Flickr photo set
LinksStop the Demolition of the Campus Rd Garden, online petition
Education, Libraries & Cultural Affairs Committee, Community Board 14
Land of the Free, Home of the…Cars?, Dassa Gutwirth, Sustainable Flatbush, 2010-02-23 (Illustrated with my photos of Campus Road Garden)
BC issues plan for new community garden, stirring ire, Courier-Life, 2010-02-09
Saving the Campus Road Community Garden from Parking Lot Fate, 2009-10-19
Brooklyn College to pave over popular garden to expand track, Flatbush residents not pleased, Daily News, 2009-10-09