Revitalize abandoned gas stations to turn them into community gardens.The Young Professionals of Nanaimo


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  • increase awareness on importance of local food production
  • bring community groups together to acheive a common goal
  • teach local youth leadership and life skills
  • feed Nanaimo's lower income and poverty stricken families



Our community, like many others is plagued with “brownfield sites”, caused by the closing of a service station. The YPN Community Gardens project is a temporary solution, to beautify these sites and to use these sites to help feed our community. We will create community spaces on these sites, by building raised vegetable beds, bringing in soil and seedlings and water. Thorough testing of our soil and air contamination will be conducted the ensure the quality of all produce grown on site.

All excess food production (after volunteers have been fed) will be distrubited the local food bank for those most in need. These sites will also teach those with no gardening experience how to grow and care for plants. We have the potential to educate and inspire the community to create gardens of their own while providing an alternative use for some of our city’s most visible empty lots. We will begin to garden on our first site May 1st, 2011 and will add sites as our budget allows.

Community Benefit

Nanaimo ranks amongst BC’s poorest communities and our south end have been plagued with poverty and hunger issues for decades. Even for those with enough to eat, often highly nutritious foods like locally grown fresh produce are outside of their budget. During harvest seasons all extra produce grown will feed those with the greatest need. This is a solution to our community’s most pressing issues. Less than 5% of the food consumed on the island is grown locally. Food must be shipped here by boat and in times of disaster shipping can go interrupted for days or even weeks. We feel it is time for all communities to rapidly increase the amount of food grown locally. Across Canada there are over 2800 abandoned gas stations sitting vacant. Our group explored various possibilities for interim use of these sites and decided the greatest benefit would be to use these sites as community gardens. Produce will be shared between volunteers, community groups and the food bank.

How will the $25K be used?

Budget Notes: Multiply times the number above with number of sites and it will get us over the $25,000 grant.
$ 800 Seeds and Building Materials
$ 1,000 Irrigation
$ 200 Tools
$ 750 Soil
$ 600 Signage
$ 1,000 Storage Shed
$ 200 Pots
$ 1,000 Communication and Promotion
$ 720 120/mth power, water, misc monthly costs x 6mths (operating months pe

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