Tradgard Pa Sparet
After a super neat and interesting afternoon at the sustainable community of Hammarby Sjostad, we went to meet Max Goldstein, an urban planner for the City of Stockholm, at an urban garden. What was cool about the garden was not only that it was in the middle of the city, but that it was built on a retired railway line that otherwise would be wasted brownfield. Tradgard Pa Sparet, or Garden on the Tracks, was built by two charming German PR individuals after being inspired by New York’s High Line Garden and a similar idea in Berlin.
Pictured above: Students enjoy exploring the garden before speaking with Max.
The project was made possible by the support of the City of Stockholm. We found this inspiring as gaining access to land within city boundaries is often seen as a barrier to the success of urban gardens.
One of the key differences we discovered in our casual and fun interview with Max was that the project is all about FOOD LITERACY - which is component of CRFAIR, a group of Victoria organisations working to improve food security, food sovereignty and food literacy in the Capital Regional District. The garden is an open and inclusive environment for learning which has attracted an eclectic mix of new gardeners from all walks of life. It provides plots for preschool and elementary school kids to learn about growing food/plants as well as for restaurants to incorporate local foods into their menu.
Max Goldstein also gave a comparison between Cascadia and Sweden, saying that the major difference is that where BC/Oregon lacks in public transit, we make make up for with a food plan, while Sweden lacks an adequate local food production plan but has in incredible transit system. This garden is a step in the right direction for improving food literacy and increasing awareness in inner-city Stockholm.