This past summer was a season of growth for the Food Eco District (FED), a local restaurant organization with a vision of creating a sustainable dining destination in downtown Victoria. In late July, FED planted over 50 square feet of new urban garden space near restaurant members across the city, including Yalla, and Olive the Senses. FED also worked with Foo Asian Street Food to transform a previously underused patch of dirt next to their patio into a 21’ raised bed. Nearby at the intersection of Yates St and Blanshard St, FED’s first community planter box was installed on the boulevard, giving locals and tourists access to a fresh edible garden.
FED (www.get-fed.ca) is a Victoria based non-profit that is working with local restaurants to create a vibrant and distinct neighbourhood in Victoria’s downtown core. The district runs east to west between Quadra St and Douglas St, and north to south between Johnson St and Broughton St. FED restaurant members are working together to green their operations by participating in the Vancouver Island Green Business Program (www.vigbc.ca), with the goal of scoring Gold Level or higher in each restaurant. The District is fast becoming a destination for sustainable food, full of amazing eateries and a growing number of edible gardens.
FED wants the gardens to spark some conversation about the potential for urban agriculture to exist in our downtown core. They are also a neat piece of branding for its restaurant members, serving as a visual cue for consumers looking for a local and environmentally-conscious food experience. And, says Project Coordinator Heidi Grantner, “they’re just really beautiful!”