In the spring of 2011, the NorthStar Foundation initiated construction and implementation of a community garden on a portion of reclaimed property at 48th and Sahler Streets. A half‐acre plot that once held condemned housing was transformed into a site of growth, shared effort and community revitalization.
One of the main goals of the Sahler Street Garden was to connect neighbors to real food by engaging them in the production process. NorthStar built interest through door‐to‐door discussions with area residents in addition to promotion throughout the city at large. As a result, in the first year of operation more than 120 people volunteered at the garden and contributed over 700 hours of work valued in excess of $15,000.(i) Neighbors and community members continue to utilize all available space in the community garden. In 2014, it was estimated that gardeners in total were able to save nearly $1,000 per month in food expenses by growing their own produce in the NorthStar garden.
Other facets of the community, from farmers and small business owners to large corporations, contributed to the Garden through gifts of reclaimed building materials, supplies, tools and skilled labor.
(i) According to the Independent Sector