The Importance of Participatory Planning for the Sustainability of Community Gardens
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Community gardens are a powerful tool for improving the urban environment, and the benefits associated with them are well established in both popular publications and in academia. Unfortunately, we often see community gardens fail. Literature suggests that the considerable rate of failure may be brought upon by lack of community engagement. This thesis aims to identify ways to enhance participation in community gardens; and seeks to explore the proposition that community engagement may be fostered through participatory planning, which contributes to the long-term sustainability of the gardens. In order to explore this proposition, this thesis presents and analyzes the case study of a unique participatory planning process developed for a community garden in Chicago, La Huerta Roots & Rays.