City getting ready to reopen community gardens with a little guidance from local health unit

City Hall moving to reopen four community gardens with aims to provide sustainable food source

The City of Barrie is primed to reopen its community gardens for public use, once city staff and health unit officials make sure everything is on the up and up.

Barrie City Council held a virtual vote on Monday night, via online video, to have city staff work with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit in coming up with the best way to reopen the city’s four community gardens for public use. Those parks are Eastview Community Park, Sunnidale Park, Shear Park, and Golden Meadow Park.

Councillor Keenan Aylwin put the motion on the table, saying these gardens can serve a nobler purpose during the pandemic. “Food security is an issue, particularly in a time like this,” said Aylwin via Zoom during Monday night’s meeting, “We should be creating a local and resilient food system, for all times, so we’re prepared for a crisis,”

Aylwin moved to have the city investigate the feasibility of providing a backyard garden program for residents, complete with seedlings and soil, but the notion was squashed over issues of staffing.

Over the weekend, the province declared community gardens like the ones in Barrie can be put to use despite emergency restrictions banning many public amenity usages.