ST. PAUL (April 17, 2013) — The Saint Paul City Council on Thursday authorized the Department of Parks and Recreation to enter into a development agreement with Frogtown Gardens for the creation of a five acre urban agriculture demonstration site by a unanimous vote of 7-0. The development agreement describes the initial framework needed to move this important project forward.
“Frogtown Park and Farm represents an important asset for the Frogtown neighborhood and the entire City of Saint Paul,” Mayor Chris Coleman said. “I am deeply grateful for all the work Frogtown Gardens, the Trust for Public Land, and the Department of Parks and Recreation have done to help us to reach this milestone.”
The five acre urban demonstration farm will be used to teach both residents and visitors farming and gardening practices that are appropriate for urban backyards. By demonstrating these techniques, the farm will encourage residents to start their own backyard gardens and will promote healthier eating habits.
“This project is a win-win-win for the Frogtown neighborhood, residents of Ward 1, and the City of Saint Paul,” Councilmember Melvin Carter III said. “It creates an urban demonstration farm that will supply residents with healthy sustainable food choices and also takes a large step forward in addressing the identified need of lack of green space in the Frogtown neighborhood.”
The land for the Frogtown Park and Farm became available when the Wilder Foundation relocated their administrative offices. The City of Saint Paul has entered into a contingent purchase agreement with the Trust for Public Land to acquire the property in 2013.
The Trust for Public Land is currently pursuing a private and public fundraising campaign to raise the required $3.45 million for the purchase of the property and the initial development and programming. The closing date for the property is scheduled for no later than December 4, 2013 and once the closing occurs, the Trust for Public Land will convey the land to the City of Saint Paul.
Saint Paul Parks and Recreation is a nationally accredited and gold medal award-winning organization that manages more than 170 parks and open spaces, AZA accredited Como Park Zoo and Conservatory, 25 city-operated recreation centers, four municipal golf courses, more than 100 miles of trails, an indoor and two outdoor aquatic facilities, a public beach, a variety of premium sports facilities, and Great River Passage – which is the new identity for all proposed public development along Saint Paul’s more than 17 miles of Mississippi riverfront. For more information about Saint Paul Parks and Recreation, visit www.stpaul.gov/parks.