Council gives first reading of bylaw to allow community garden expansion

By Stephen Dafoe

Morinville – An expansion to the Morinville Community Garden moved a little closer to reality Mar. 13 after Council gave unanimous first reading to a bylaw that removes the Municipal Reserve designation from the land the Town is setting aside for the garden.

The Morinville Centennial Community Gardens had a successful inaugural year in 2011 behind the Morinville United Church. This year will see the expansion of the initiative to lands in Champlain Park, located across from the Ray McDonald Sports Centre and next door to the Tiny Tots Daycare.

Local agriculture was identified in Morinville’s Municipal Sustainability Initiative, municipal Development Plan and the Recreation Parks and Open Spaces Master Plan as specific initiatives the community should pursue.

However, the bylaw is necessary for the garden to go ahead as the land to be leased to the community Gardens group is located in what is currently Champlain Park. As such it is considered Municipal Reserve Land and the Municipal Government Act requires the reserve designation to be removed before a lease agreement on the land can be established.

With the proposed bylaw having been given first reading, a public hearing will be held Apr. 10 prior to second and third reading.

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