Community gardens are a cultural link that allow neighbors to come together in a public green space, to grow fresh food, to learn about healthy diets and lifestyle choices, where the old mingle with the young, or simply cool off in the shade on a hot summer day.
Central Harlem needs community gardens like Harlem Valley Garden, Electric Ladybug, Jackie Robinson, and Pleasant Village to continue to grow community, support health, collaboration, and neighborhood solidarity.
We admire Mayor de Blasio’s progressive vision for our city and support the creation of affordable housing in all the boroughs. HPD has an opportunity to do exactly that on empty lots, while preserving the existing gardens.
Those of us here at HarlemCondoLife were deeply saddened to learn that Urban Garden Center located directly across the street from the 2 buildings that exploded and collapsed in East Harlem experienced extensive damage. Luckily none of their staff were hurt in the blast but they did lose friends and many who were seriously hurt. I think we all join them with our deep sympathies in this devastating tragedy. These older buildings have to be made secure so that people can feel safe in their homes. This should have never happened and precautions must be taken so that it will not happen in the future.
So now in the aftermath we can help our neighbors. We here at the blog love this local business Urban Garden Center and visit them each year for plants in our homes as well as our common roof deck garden in the summertime. They’ve always been very neighborly and friendly. Please visit their “help” page created by Dimitri Gatanas and if possible do what you can to help out this local business. It is businesses such as these which make Harlem and our community so great. We hope that Dimitri and the crew at Urban Garden Center are rebuilding and back to normal soon just in time for Spring/Summer planting.
“On Wednesday March 12, 2014, we began our day like any other day under the MTA viaduct on East 116th St. and Park Avenue. What we never expected to ever happen, became our reality. An explosion blew up two neighborbing buildings directly across from our retail shop. We weredirectly in the ‘line of fire’ and suffered a lot of damage. Luckily, none of our staff was hurt in the blast. We did, however, lose friends and many are seriously hurt.
While we are thankful for being spared, the timing of this disaster has made our ability to open in time for spring questionable. We continue to endure a long and blistery winter. This made for slower than expected sales. The need for resources are more important than ever. We personally invested into the preparation of spring, which most of the work has been blown away from the explosion. Spring is the most important season for our business and not opening in the next couple of weeks will seriously impact our ability to stay in business….. continue reading“)