Urban Ag in the Press
It's great to see this attention to the issue. For one thing, it helps rebut one of the arguments being made by opponents of the text amendments: that "regular people" just haven't heard about them. It also helps get some of the specific proposals to weaken the amendments out on the table.
That's just not at all likely to happen. Market gardeners will have to rent or buy pieces of land like anyone else, and the fear that such a low-margin economic activity will crowd out other uses (like single family homes) is just not reasonable. Remember, we're not talking about giving or leasing these folks City-owned land. We're talking about allowing them to rent from private property owners to engage in a job-producing economic activity.
I'm also quoted referring to a study that indicates that the concern about displacement of other uses is unfounded. That study is the Land Capacity Analysis which was completed as part of the Urban Agriculture Policy Plan that the Council unanimously adopted last year. Its key finding is that we have more than enough vacant land to accommodate the expected growth over the next 20 years. From the Executive Summary of the Analysis (emphasis added):
During the next 20 years, forecasts for the City and current land supply data
suggest that city will have more than enough developable land to accommodate growth (Exhibit S-1). Demand for new space would be expected to require between 316 and 568 acres of land, depending on how densely developers build, in terms of housing units per acre, or building square feet per acre of land. Vacant land (779 acres), excess land on developed lots (or infill land, 287 acres) and land that ranks high for redevelopment (includes demolitions or expansions, 163
acres) total 1,229 acres, resulting in surplus land through 2030 of 661 to 914