Among its numerous measures, the City of Geneva’s climate strategy aims to «Develop urban garden and kitchen garden initiatives together with the local inhabitants» and «Support companies experimenting with urban agriculture».
Eating vegetables or herbs that you have grown yourself, enjoying little corners of nature in the city or simply taking pleasure in an outdoor activity with your neighbours... A growing number of city-dwellers are eager to take up urban gardening. The municipality supports several initiatives in this domain: close to 50 collective projects have been developed over the past 10 years.
In the field of urban agriculture, the City of Geneva works with a number of associations, including Genève Cultive which lists local initiatives on an interactive map. One of the emblematic urban agriculture sites in Geneva can be found in Parc Beaulieu, operated by the «Collectif Beaulieu».
There are numerous definitions of urban agriculture. Here, we distinguish agriculture practised in the city with a commercial purpose, involving a large area or productive system (rooftop greenhouses, urban farms, aquaponics) from collective gardens of a non-commercial nature. The City of Geneva wishes to support both aspects of urban agriculture, given that urban kitchen gardens based on self-consumption are currently far more widespread than projects involving sales.
Regardless of whether we talk about true agricultural production – even on a small scale – or urban kitchen gardens, the aim of urban agriculture in Geneva is not to produce food on a large scale or to replace the large farms on the rural outskirts of the city. With a view to complementarity, it endeavours to develop a community activity and create social ties focussing on initiatives, pushing us to examine the link between city-dwellers, the land and the people who feed them, while considering the role accorded urban agriculture. More generally speaking, urban agriculture can enhance awareness of agro-ecology and a different approach to eating).
Using often very simple equipment, urban agriculture serves to bring a little piece of the countryside into the city while creating areas where we can relax and meet other people. Squares, parks, wastelands, balconies or patios are all places where kitchen gardens can blossom but which are currently under-exploited. In the City of Geneva, we have noted a certain passion for urban gardening in recent years.
Examples of projects conducted or supported by the Agenda 21 - Sustainable city department
Close to 50 collective urban kitchen garden projects of every shape and size, supported by the City of Geneva, are shown on the map produced by Genève Cultive.
- Genève Cultive: an association which aims to foster dialogue and the sharing of skills between urban gardeners;
- Terrasses sans frontières: an association promoting planted roofs and permaculture;
- Collectif Beaulieu: a group of 12 associations practising urban agriculture in Parc Beaulieu;
- Les Artichauts (since 2009): production of organic seedlings in the city;
- Semences de pays (since 2016): selection and promotion within the city of seeds of marketing gardening varieties drawn primarily from local farming selections;
- Exodes urbains (since 2016): aquaponic micro-farm (hybrid system of breeding fish and producing plants).
Article modifié le 02.06.2023 à 08:39