A garden to grow into an urban-agricultural park and environmental education opportunity.
This project is part of our vision for a community space and a place for youth to learn about sustainable practices. It is the first phase of our plan to create an urban agricultural park.
January 2017 to June 2017
Ken Weikal Landscape Architect and Sue's Landscaping Inc.
Ring Around the Garden
7200 Mack Ave, Detroit MI 48214
GenesisHOPE, along with Charlevoix Village Association and Church of the Messiah, hosted community meetings to review the Working with Lots Field Guide. During the various sessions, residents identified several designs with the potential to transform vacant lots in Islandview. The final lot design for the three-acre vacant lot was selected by Genesis Lutheran Church, the leaseholder of the land, as part of a larger master plan to transform the land into an urban agricultural park.
Once GenesisHOPE received notice from DFC of our award, we reconvened community leaders to share the good news. We hired Ken Weikal & Associates to assist with the master plan and oversee the installation of the Ring Around the Garden Lot Design.
Ken and his team reviewed the plan documents and solicited bids from contractors. The estimate to install the rain garden entirely by professionals was $2,000 more than the amount of the grant, so we had to refine the plan slightly.
Yes, we used professionals for 100% of the labor, which ended up making the implementation of the exact lot design cost prohibitive. We decided to use fewer plants than recommended to address this issue.
Stormwater management, education, beautification
GenesisHOPE received an evergreen lease from Genesis Lutheran Church that states that as long as the land is used for the benefit of the community, we may use the land.
I learned about designing a space, accounting for the sun, thinking about sight lines, and using various tools for installation. I also gained knowledge on working with contractors.
A community meeting was planned on the day of the final DFC convening to share the benefits of aesthetically pleasing management of stormwater. The bioswale will also become part of the FLOWW (food, land, ozone, water, and waste) curriculum to teach youth participating in our GREENCorps about water conservation, soil, and plants.
Apart from applying for and winning a DFC Working with Lots Mini-Grant, we did not raise any additional funds. If we had known the costs were going to be higher than expected due to the costs of excavation and soil removal, we would have had a few fundraisers.
We had to adjust the number of plants because, without the help of volunteers, the cost of installing the design entirely by professionals was greater than the amount of the grant.
Watering and weekly weeding by the GREENCorps. In 2018 we plan to add additional flowers.