Councilmember Garcia and New City School Announce Development of Educational Urban Farm
2010-05-24 · By Editor
Councilmember Robert Garcia has facilitated the leasing of city land for the development of a working educational farm by the New City School. The farm will be operated by a professional farmer and NCS students, parents and staff. The farm will also offer opportunities for members of the community to participate in sustainable agriculture.
“This farm will benefit not only the New City students and their families, but the entire neighborhood and the City in general,” said Garcia. “This is a very exciting project.”
The City’s Long Beach Housing Development Company will lease a lot, vacant for more than ten years, at Long Beach Blvd and 15th Street, to the New City School. The public charter school, a majority of whose students are low-income, will lease the land for five years at a cost of one dollar. Councilmember Garcia, Community Development Director Dennis Thys, and Stephanie Lee, Cofounder of New City School, made the announcement today at the site of the farm, 225 East 15th Street.
“We are grateful to Councilmember Garcia for helping us every step of the way,” said Kim Ward, Director of Development for New City School. “This is something our students, parents, and teachers are very excited about, and we couldn’t have done it without him.”
The quarter-acre site will include fruit trees, vegetable gardens, a windmill for power, and, eventually, some animals. According to New City School, the garden will help children learn about “farming, nutrition, environmental biology, and conservation. Students will also learn math, English literacy, history, and other core curriculum subjects that are enhanced by garden-based learning, ” as well as getting exercise.
The grand opening will involve students, parents, teachers and community leaders in preparing garden beds, building the infrastructure, and planting the first crops. That event is scheduled for Thursday June 10th, from 8am-4pm, with a ceremonial kick-off at 9am.
“In addition to giving students a hands-on experience with sustainable agriculture, this farm creates green space in a very urban area, and sets an example of how the City can reimagine business corridors and land uses,” said Councilmember Garcia. “I’m grateful to New City School for their vision and creativity.”