Libertyville Considers Community Garden

The proposed plan for a community garden in downtown Libertyville goes before the Village Board for a vote on Jan. 10, 2012.

The idea of a community garden in downtown Libertyville is one step closer to fruition.

Libertyville’s Special Projects Committee has recommended village staff work on details of creating a community garden on the north side of the Metra tracks.

“I think this is a great idea and I would like to see this happen,” said Trustee Jim Moran during the Dec. 13 meeting.

The proposed garden would start with 25 plots, each 20- by 10-feet, and charge residents $25 a year to rent a plot.

Some trustees were concerned about the upfront costs and whether there was demand for the plots.

In response, Earl Hoover, who presented the idea, told trustees that if the garden were approved, he would commit to raising 50 percent of the cost to start it.

“If it comes in at $2,400, I would raise $1,200,” Hoover told the committee during the meeting.

Village Administrator Kevin Bowens estimates that it would take the village three years to recuperate costs for starting the garden if it were funded by the village and rent from the gardeners.

Other issues the village is looking into include parking, a lease agreement with Metra and whether the village’s insurance would cover a community garden.

Hoover says the spring of 2013 is the earliest the garden could be ready, and said he hopes that timeline gives the village enough time to iron out those issues.

Some Patch readers have asked if there is anything they could do to help support the idea, however, Hoover says he is not ready to take the next step until the village approves the idea.

“I don’t want the village to be in a spot where they would have to turn something down and could be criticized by a whole bunch of people,” Hoover said. “Until the village has had a chance to look at the issues and determined that it is prepared to go ahead, it would be premature to start a list” of potential gardeners.

Details of the community garden will go before the Village Board for a vote on Jan. 10, 2012.

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