GIS in Planning

By Carl Kunda

In order to use the concepts learned in class I developed a project to consider the impact of community gardens in a low income urban area, Trenton, NJ.  The project required geocoding garden locations to update a map of community gardens and digitizing the points to update the parcel locations of gardens in the city.  An important development in Trenton has been the creation of School Gardens that are intended to add educational and nutrition opportunities for students.  In order to develop a clear way of evaluating the influence of these programs on measurable educational statistics testing scores were analyzed for schools with garden programs.  A final component of the project attempted to connect change in educational achievement as an essential neighborhood function.  Community gardens are inherently community based.  The school gardens occupy a strange space between the community it serves and the metropolitan regional organization of the school district.  The project begins to define the tensions between the two.