New Report Aims to Help L.A.'s Urban Gardens Grow

A group of graduate planning student at UCLA have compiled the first comprehensive survey of urban agriculture in Los Angeles County, providing tools for planners and policy-makers to boost the area's agricultural fecundity.

"The new report, "Cultivate L.A.: An Assessment of Urban Agriculture in L.A. County," is intended to aid city planners as they learn how to accommodate these new land uses in the nation's most populous county," says an article on the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs website. "Project managers also expect the data to be a useful tool for urban agriculture practitioners and start-up entrepreneurs seeking information about current and future business models and siting opportunities for urban agriculture enterprises."

"Drawing on public records, personal interviews and sophisticated surveying and validation methods, the researchers produced an interactive map — hosted at cultivatelosangeles.org — detailing the location of every formal urban agriculture site across the county, excluding residential backyard gardens. The map is supplemented by a report, downloadable from the same website, with in-depth analysis, case studies and other resources."

Among the key findings:

  • L.A. County is home to 1,261 verified urban agriculture sites
  • The majority of those sites (761) are school gardens
  • "Definitions for agricultural activities in municipal codes vary widely across the county, making it difficult — if not impossible — for urban farmers to operate in compliance with local health and zoning regulations."
Full Story: Luskin students compile first look at farms in LA

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