A modified community garden plot program will run in Red Deer this season, says the city.
The city says it consulted with Alberta Health Services and decided to reinstate a modified program to maintain safety.
“The city’s emergency operation’s centre continues to make the best decisions possible, based on the information we have at the time,” said Karen Mann, Red Deer’s emergency operations centre director. “The decision to revisit the closure of community garden plots stemmed from conversations taking place across the province about community gardens.
“Upon further review with Alberta Health Services and our operational departments, we determined we could reinstate the program in a modified way, putting measures in place to help ensure the health and safety of all program participants and employees.”
Here is what the hybrid program will look like, according to the city:
l The city will allow community garden plots with the expectation that users will adhere to public health orders and practice physical distancing, sanitation of tools and use proper hygiene.
l Only garden plot users registered in 2019 to return.
l No new registrations will be accepted for the 2020 program.
“This approach will allow up to 151 gardeners to return to the Red Deer garden plot program and will empower community groups to operate their 152 garden boxes, if they choose,” said Mann. “This means retaining over 300 garden plots in our community.”
The city closed its recreation facilities and amenities on March 25 until June 30. This list of closures included the garden plot program in an effort to prevent spread of COVID-19.
The city says the decision was in alignment with direction from AHS and Dr. Deena Hinshaw.
Returning garden plot users who were registered in 2019 will be contacted directly by the city.