Anyway, I was very curious to find out more about this new edible (sub)urban design, so today I excitedly called the local municipal offices, Maroondah Council. I mentioned how wonderful I thought the herb gardens at the town square were and asked lots of questions about who looks after the gardens, who uses the produce, whether passers-by are welcomed to pick the herbs, who designed the space, and so on... There there was a brief silence, then, "Mmmm, what very good questions! Maybe the restaurants use it ... it could be for the markets? Just a moment, please. I will ask my team." After some time, she returned to the phone and suggested I contact Centre Management of the Eastland Shopping Complex and gave me their number.
|Swathes of basil, mint, sage, rosemary lemongrass, lemon verbena fill the garden beds - surrounding the restaurants and cafes.|
Marketing? I thought I'd be put through to a design team, or facilities management, or perhaps community engagement or a sustainability officer. Perhaps it is just a marketing and promotional project. Surrounding the restaurants with herb gardens provides shoppers and diners with a "gastranomical experience" - urban agriculture, growing your own food and community gardens are so trendy right now. I refuse however to become the cynic so tomorrow I will endeavour to delve deeper and deeper until I find some real answers, and a clear design brief for the town square.
Meanwhile, my friend also told me of the rooftop gardens at one of the adjacent restaurant/cafes .... so guess where I'm heading tomorrow! I look forward to hearing back from Eastland, but I'm also definitely planning to visit the restaurants and ask around directly.
|Artichokes, thyme, lavender, mint, nasturtium growing at Ringwood Town Square in open accessible gardens to be enjoyed by the community.|