H Street Community Garden Safe From Development for Another Year

by Tim Regan March 15, 2016 at 12:30 pm 0

Wylie Street Community GardenResidents of the H Street corridor area can cultivate flowers, tomatoes and other plants for at least another year in a nearby community garden, the executive director of a nonprofit organization that owns the property, said.

Kenneth J. Brewer Sr., executive director of the H Street Community Development Corp., granted gardeners of the Wylie Street Garden “one more season with undetermined timeline,” according to local gardner Paige Byrne in an e-mail to a neighborhood listserv. Neighborhood blog Frozen Tropics first reported on the news earlier this morning.

Brewer previously granted the garden a reprieve from possible development last July.

Read Byrne’s entire email below:

Kenneth Brewer, executive director of HSCDC grants Wylie gardeners one more season with undetermined timeline. A campaign to preserve the garden started in September of 2014 when the property was enhanced with a large for sale sign. Research from the campaign discovered the garden could mitigate one inch of storm water to support the efforts by DDOE in cleaning Anacostia. Research also determined the long term values Wylie garden could do for the community: it could install vertical harvest growing systems, serve those in need & develop skills of our youth, become a resource for chefs on H, continue to engage the students in the Reggio program of Miner ES and continue to connect our community members and could be part of the city program offered by Whole Foods. Robert, a gentlemen that mows the lawn felt a presence while mowing and reflecting on the produce of his grandothers garden in NE. How fantastic spaces on H can cause us to pause and recognize, like the Mulberry tree in the corner of Wylie garden natural spaces and things are valued and an essential.

The preservation efforts envisioned this space as a park for the people who persevered and passed through here or did not. The immigrants and shop keepers, the community of brick layers who lived on Wylie, rumored Duke Ellington who lived in an apartment or the police who did not even cruise by in the 80’s. Wylie garden, our last green asset along the HStreet corridor sits just off 13th & H where people continue to pass through like Mayor Bowser opening the trolley, the marathoner’s turning right in the final stretch and soon the customers of the open farm market, who also see Wylie garden as a resource.

Byrne, who has tended plants in the 16-plot garden since 2006, met with Brewer last year after securing more than 230 supporters in a petition to “preserve the last green block on H St. corridor.” She previously had considered raising funds to buy the land after a plan was announced to turn the property into a parking lot.


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