Garden City Lands
The Garden City Lands are an extraordinary 55.2 hectares (136.5 acres) of open space located within the Agricultural Land Reserve, in the heart of Richmond, between Westminster Highway, Alderbridge Way, Garden City Way and No. 4 Road. The Garden City Lands will become a major new community park with diverse uses, including urban agriculture, environmental preservation and interpretation, recreational and cultural uses.
The Garden City Lands Park Development Plan represents the synthesis of the original Garden City Lands Legacy Landscape Plan endorsed by Richmond City Council in 2014, with new science-based recommendations as well as the feedback the City received from hundreds of Richmond residents and the contribution of Kwantlen Polytechnic University regarding agricultural production. Council has approved funding for the phased implementation of the Garden City Lands Park Development Plan.
To review the Development Plan and an enlarged version of the Legacy Landscape Plan above, please see the following PDF document:
GCL Park Development Plan - PDF
The Park Development Plan key components includes:
- The Agricultural Lands
- The Bog
- The Rise
- The Nodes
- The Dyke
- Perimeter Trails
For more details about the above key components, visit the Garden City Lands Archive page.
Site Activities Update and Current Use
After a very busy 2017 and 2018, the City is currently planning a number of upcoming projects. These projects are subject to City Council review and approval prior to the City moving forward with a formal Application to the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC). The City’s Application will request the ALC’s approval to proceed with the next phase of site improvements including expanded recreational opportunities and the infrastructure to support expanded public access onto the site. Meanwhile, the City is actively maintaining the extensive perimeter plantings installed in 2018 with weed control, mowing, mulching and watering.
Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s (KPU) Sustainable Agriculture Farm Program is starting its first full season of cultivation of the farm area the City has leased to KPU. This includes growing in the newly erected greenhouse, building a hoop house and cultivating the intensive market garden. A significant portion of their fields will be under cover crop to nourish the soil and promote beneficial insect populations.
The 2.9 km long Perimeter Path is open to the public. The City has surfaced the path closer to the road with a compacted fine gravel permitting universally accessible surface. Bikes welcome to use the paths as well. Please be aware of service and farm vehicles using the rougher interior path which runs parallel to the perimeter path. Dogs are permitted on the outside perimeter path until further notice. The City would like to remind the public to keep dogs on leash when walking the perimeter path.
As per ALC restrictions, the interior of the site is closed to public access. Please stay on the perimeter path. Only City staff and KPU personnel are permitted within the site at this time.
In 2017, the following areas of the Garden City Lands were built:
- Perimeter pedestrian and bicycle paths;
- Completion of the seepage barrier along the central dyke and along Westminster Highway;
- Installation of site infrastructure (drainage ditches, storm sewer connections and weir structures, preparation for electrical and water connections);
- Placement of soil for the initial phase of farm development (subject to approval by the Agricultural Land Commission);
- Hydroseeding of exposed peat soils along paths; and
- Fall/Winter tree planting along the perimeter.
For a full screen view of this image, please click here.
In the Spring and Summer of 2018, the following will be constructed as weather conditions permit:
- Perimeter pedestrian and bicycle paths;
- Installation of site infrastructure (drainage ditches, water features, drain tile in KPU fields);
- Complete placement of soils for the KPU farm;
- Hydroseeding along paths;
- Fall / Winter tree planting along the perimeter and planting of fruit tree orchard on the Rise; and,
- Farming on the KPU farm fields to commence.
As sections of the perimeter pedestrian and bike trails are completed, they will be opened up for public use and allow people to experience the exciting vision being implemented at the Garden City Lands.
For a full screen view of this image, please click here.2017 Construction Photo / Video - Drone Footage
July 30, 2017
As sections of the perimeter pedestrian and bike trails are completed, they will be opened up to the public to allow people to experience the exciting vision being implemented at the Garden City Lands.
For more information or if you have questions, please contact:
Research Planner 2, Parks Planning, Design and Construction: Alex Kurnicki
Water and Ecological Resource Management
Implementation of the plan will be a multi-year process. The City commissioned a detailed water and ecological resource management study to guide the development and maintenance of the site.
To review the Water and Ecological Resource Management Plan, please see the following PDF documents:
Related Documents and Resources
Garden City Lands Archive
Additional related documents and archived resource documents for the Garden City Lands site can be found on the Garden City Lands Archive page.