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Common Roots Urban Farm launches crowdfunding campaign to help fund relocation

After seven seasons at the corner of Robie St. and Bell Rd., the community garden needs to find a new place to grow because of the QEII Redevelopment Project
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Common Roots Urban Garden (Meghan Groff/HalifaxToday.ca)

The Common Roots Urban Farm has to plant itself in another location and they've launched a crowdfunding campaign to help pay for the move.

After seven seasons at the corner of Robie St. and Bell Rd., the community garden needs to find a new place to grow because of the QEII Redevelopment Project.

The group's former coordinator said the spot was always meant to be temporary.

"The urban farm was started by the hospital as an interim land use ... instead of putting a parking lot on there, they put an urban farm," explained Jayme Melrose.

They've been given plenty of notice, and even an extension. They originally planned to move in Oct. 2018, but that's been pushed back until April of next year.

They estimate it will cost at least $20,000 to move soil, sheds and greenhouses and they're reaching out to the community.

"We're going to need money to feed people, hire trucks and carpenters to dismantle some of the beautiful infrastructure we have."

Another big step in the process is finding their new home.

Melrose said they're narrowing in on potential locations in Fairview and Clayton Park.

"People wanted it on the peninsula, but we've been looking pretty hard and it doesn't seem like that's possible."

The new piece of land needs to be accessible to a broad range of people, sunny and big enough to hold community functions.

"There's not a lot of profit in farming, or food, or community projects, so we are looking for a piece of land that we won't need to pay to use," said Melrose. "That the social impact and all the community benefits that the farm creates is rent enough."

Since launch, the urban farm has harvested nearly 45,500 pounds of food and provided land for eight newcomers to Canada to start farm businesses.




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