Community Feedback Summaries and Staff Recommendation on Hill Farms Area Community Garden Site

Updated Tuesday, February 27, 2018
Community feedback on a community garden site in the Hill Farms area was solicited through a public meeting on January 8, 2018 and a community survey (online and hard copies), which was open Dec 2017 through February 2018. There were 34 attendees at the public meeting and 134 total respondents to the community survey.

Based on the feedback received from the public meeting and community survey, staff is recommending that the current garden space within Rennebohm Park be expanded. However, taking into consideration community concerns related to increasing development in the area and increasing use pressures at Rennebohm Park, staff is also requesting that Board of Park Commissioners consider limiting further garden expansion in the park.

Please see the links below for information on the feedback received and a staff memo providing a recommendation for the community garden site to the Board of Park Commissioners.

Staff Recommendations - Hill Farms Area Community Garden Siting Project (PDF)

Public Meeting Summary (1/8/18) - Hill Farms Area Community Garden Siting Project (PDF)

Community Garden Survey Summary (Closed 2/2/18) - Hill Farms Area Community Garden Siting Project (PDF)

Community Conversation Details (Meeting was convened on Monday, January 8th, 2018)

The City of Madison wants your input on establishing new or expanding community gardens at Bordner, Indian Hills, or Rennebohm Parks. In early 2018 come have a “Community Conversation” to find out more about specific sites, decision-making process and timeline. The City of Madison values your input and staff hope you are able to join us. City Staff, committee members, and elected officials will use your feedback to assist in making a final garden siting decision.

Transportation assistance available and food/drink and childcare provided!

When: Monday, January 8th, 2018 from 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Where: Mt. Olive Lutheran Church (110 N. Whitney Way, Madison, WI 53705) - Fellowship Room.
What: An event for interested community members and residents to find out more about specific garden sites, the decision-making process and timeline, and offer feedback to staff.
Transportation: If you need transportation assistance, please contact George Reistad at 608-266-4611 or
Food/Refreshments: YES! Food and drink are provided at this meeting.
Childcare: YES! Childcare is also provided.

Can't make the Community Conversation but still want to provide feedback? Please complete the online survey and let us know your thoughts!

Online Survey:  (Please note that this survey CLOSED on Friday February 2nd, 2018)

Staff Report and its Recommendations on Potential Garden Sites

In 2016, the Sheboygan Avenue Community Garden was forced to relocate from its home of 35 years on the State Department of Transportation office building grounds. Space for 20% of the garden was found in Rennebohm Park near the tennis courts, and the City began a process to identify potential locations for additional community gardens in the Hill Farms area. In November of 2017, the Common Council accepted staff’s recommendation that three potential locations — in Bordner, Indian Hills and Rennebohm Parks — be evaluated through a public engagement process. For more information on these three sites and the criteria used to select them, see the PDF of the Staff Report below. The complete record of the Common Council Resolution process can be found in Legislative File #42334 linked below.

PDF of Staff Report

Legistar 42334

Racial Equity and Social Justice (RESJ) Analysis

Throughout the course of this project, City staff and community members worked collaboratively to complete a Racial Equity and Social Justice analysis of the engagement process surrounding siting a community garden in the Hill Farms area of the City. This analysis allowed staff and community members to think through barriers and impediments to robust and diverse engagement from residents and community members on making a siting decision for a community garden. After identifying some of these barriers, solutions were implemented to make varied and diverse engagement easier for members of the community. To learn more about the findings, please find the analysis below.

RESJ Analysis: Community Engagement Strategies for University Hill Farms Community Garden Siting

Park Site Maps with Proposed Community Garden Areas

Proposed Garden Location - Bordner Park - Click Link or Image Below for PDF File

Bordner Park

Proposed Garden Location - Indian Hills Park - Click Link or Image Below for PDF File

Proposed Garden Site - Indian Hills Park

Proposed Garden Location - Rennebohm Park - Click Link or Image Below for PDF File

Proposed Garden Location - Rennebohm Park

Please contact George Reistad, Food Policy Coordinator with additional comments.