I have some bad news. I have to halt the application process for the rooftop garden. I’ve received feedback from the City of Vancouver and COHO that application form I had posted was too simplistic in outlining the increased rules and rigor being put in place this year. I think COHO intends on sending out a paper based form with an attached rules document in the near future. Sorry for the confusion, especially for everyone who has already applied.
I received the following feedback from Jennifer Standeven (City of Vancouver) and Paula Temrick (representing COHO):
I understand that you’re wondering why we are taking up a much more structured approach with our Rooftop Gardens this year. As a new shared tenant rooftop garden there are many things to work through and as these are rooftop gardens located on top of a $27 million investment in social housing, there is more to think through. Our Guide and Agreement has been set-up to address a broad spectrum of interests and concerns that relate both to the building, the Property Management and the tenant community. We’re dealing with a residential building, with tenants not owners, needing to protect millions in building infrastructure, and demonstrate an open, inclusive and fair process to all tenants. Our operational guidelines are intended to provide a solid foundation that can successfully support shared tenant rooftop gardening over the long-term life of these rental buildings. Although I hear this structure is more than what you’re used to or may think is needed, I do hope this explanation and the revised Garden Guide provides you a greater understanding of the issues and interests we have needed to be taken into consideration.
Because the Landlord and Property Manager allowed gardening to proceed in 2012 before we had the rules and an agreement in place and because your garden at 122 was a group and garden success, it is understandable that by putting structure / rules in place now we can be perceived as being restrictive. Last year’s research in action allowed us to clarify the requirements and processes needed while operating; this year and going forward there will now be clarity to start with. The ongoing comments, suggestions and edits from yourself and other gardeners, have been very helpful and has pushed us to make the Guide and Agreement thorough and clear. So thank-you for urging us to have this rigour.