The ACT community is rapidly growing, with an increase of approximately 25,000 people by 2021 - this will bring our total population beyond 420,000 people - more people living closer together. This brings a number of challenges to city planners and service providers. So how do we make sure that with this growth:
* people feel connected to their neighbours and the wider community
* our communities are productive, healthy and sustainable
Around the world, particularly in developed nations, community gardens have been used by increasingly densely populated cities to address issues associated with city living. When community gardens have been rolled into communities they have reported:
* increased awareness of options for healthy food and sustainable living
* increased consumption of locally grown organic produce by the community
* increased physical activity and enjoyment of the outdoors
* increased friendships and a sense of connectedness
* increased confidence and sense of achievement from having contributed to the community overall sustainability.
The ACT currently has 12 established community gardens for growing organic produce. However with the territories rapidly growing population it would be beneficial to establish more. The GREEN app takes population density, household size and income, ethnicity, crime statistics, flood, city planning and bus routes data to propose optimal new sites for locating new community gardens. The app then uses ACT aerial data to plot these locations on a map of the ACT.