Milwaukee's Vacant Lot Program Spawns Urban Garden Center

The year-round garden center, plots sold by the city of Milwaukee for $500 as part of its vacant lot program, will provide training and create jobs.


By Jeramey Jannene

The city is proposing to sell three vacant lots clustered around W. Fond du Lac Ave. and N. 18th St. and totaling 10,360 square-feet to Sharon and Larry Adams. The Adams, in partnership with developer Juli Kaufmann and her firm Fix Development, want to add this land to their existing parcels in the area to create Adams Garden Park.

According to a city report, “Adams Garden Park will be designed as an urban oasis that is tailored primarily to urban dwellers in the immediate and downtown communities. The garden center will showcase strategies for urban gardening and beautifying urban spaces such as porches and balconies. The retail operation will feature unique and specialty items made by local artisans and manufacturers.”‘

Sharon Adams told the Common Council’s Zoning, Neighborhoods & Development Committee that “this project literally grew out of listening to neighbors, experimenting and growing, and bringing together an opportunity to create an urban garden collective.” Adams went on to tell the committee that “it will be a retail source for flowers and plants. It will be a training source and a job creation source.” Their plans call for the operation to operate year-round.

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Access the Vacant Lot Handbook on the city of Milwaukee's website.

Learn about the 2018 Reclaiming Vacant Lot Properties conference in Milwaukee on Reclaiming

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