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The City of Edmonton will be offering new opportunities to garden on City land for the 2018 growing season. This is part of a pilot program to test out a Vacant Lot Cultivation Licence. We are looking for conscientious gardeners who want to cultivate food or flowers on municipal land, between April 1 to October 31, 2018.

The online application and Vacant Lot Cultivation Pilot Rules & Guidelines will be available beginning on March 1, 2018, and applications will be accepted until April 15, 2018.

Timelines:

  • March 1, 2018 - The application period opens. Applications will be accepted on until April 15, 2018
  • Licensed sites will be open to participants
  • October 22, 2018 - Harvest and clean-up completed
  • October 23-30, 2018 - The City will inspect lots to ensure that all materials have been removed
  • October 31, 2018 - Licence expires

Map of Vacant Lots

Vacant Lot Cultivation Pilot Details

As a pilot participant, you will help us to determine whether the Vacant Lot Cultivation Licence should be established as a permanent program, and what the appropriate roles and responsibilities for the City and gardeners should be. As a pilot participant, you will:

  • Take part in a 7-month gardening experiment on public utility lots, from April 1 to October 31, 2018.
  • Work with a sites that is offered in “as is” condition. You may either import clean soil, or test and remediate existing soil as needed, at your own cost. The City cannot guarantee the quality or condition of the soil and strongly recommends the use of raised beds.
  • The City has free planters that you may borrow on a first-come, first-served basis. Apply For a Planter.
  • Grow flowers or food plants for non-profit use, and for personal, household or community benefit.
  • Provide your own materials, including raised beds, soil and water, and assume all costs.
  • Be responsible for cleanup and removal of all materials at the end of the season.
  • Collaborate with City staff as we test and tweak a new program.
  • Provide feedback to City staff by participating in surveys, site inspections and discussion groups about your experience.
  • Act as a steward of municipal land, managing urban gardening activities in a first-class manner, in ways that have at least one community use, such as providing opportunities for household food production, recreation, education, beautification, community gathering spaces, and environmental benefits (such as absorbing rainwater or providing habitat).
  • Have the first opportunity to renew your licence, should the program continue for 2019, and if you have respectfully complied with the terms and conditions of the licence. The City will communicate with you to notify you of opportunities for renewing your licence for 2019, and future years, as they emerge.
  • Gardening activities are a temporary use, until these public utility lots are required for other uses. There is no guarantee the same site will be available in future years, or that the pilot will continue. These properties are public land and could be sold or developed.
  • Plan for gardening activities and structures that can be removed at the end of the season. You will have use of your lot between April 1, 2018 and October 31, 2018.

Cost to Participate: $100

Insurance Requirements: $1 million worth of liability insurance

Pilot Term: The pilot runs from April 1 to October 31, 2018. There is no guarantee of continuation in 2019. The City will communicate with you to notify you of opportunities for renewing your licence for 2019, and future years, as they emerge.

Size: Lots range in size from 45 to 400 sq. m, averaging around 200 sq. m.

This pilot project does not allow for:

  • On-site sales of produce
  • Cannabis production
  • Livestock (hens and bees)
  • Permanent landscaping

How to Apply

Before you apply:

To apply:

  • Submit the online application form indicating your top 3 preferences.
  • The City will contact you within 5 to 7 business days to confirm that your application has been received, and will provide you with further instructions.
  • The City will provide you with a package containing three copies of the Vacant Lot Cultivation Licence for you to sign and return. Submit it by mail to the City of Edmonton, Real Estate and Housing, Garden Use Licence, 10th Floor, Edmonton Tower, 10111 104 Avenue, Edmonton AB T5J 0J4 or in person to the Edmonton Service Centre, 2nd Floor of the Edmonton Tower, 10111 104 Avenue, Edmonton.

  • The City will process your signed licence and return your Executed Copy to you, along with a bill for $100. Processing time may take 6 to 8 weeks.
  • Mail your payment to the City of Edmonton, Real Estate and Housing, Garden Use Licence, 10th Floor, Edmonton Tower, 10111 104 Avenue NW, Edmonton AB T5J 0J4, or deliver it in person to the Edmonton Service Centre, 2nd Floor of the Edmonton Tower, 10111 104 Avenue NW, Edmonton.

You must comply with all applicable laws, orders and regulations of federal, provincial and municipal authorities, including:

Additional Resources

For More Information

Telephone

780-496-7837  

Email vacantlotpilot@edmonton.ca

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