A community garden proposed for Kingsport Park is facing some push-back.
On Wednesday, Joel Bunker, executive director of Grow Annapolis—a nonprofit promoting and sustaining urban agriculture—posted a statement on the organization's Facebook page encouraging friends of the group to express their support for the project to the Annapolis City Council.
"What you should know is that the city may be pulling back support from the Annapolis Community Garden Project off Bywater Rd.," Bunker wrote in the statement. "This is due to the pressure of few loud and influential voices from the Kingsport Development which is adjacent to proposed site."
The project—spearheaded by Grow Annapolis—is included in Mayor Josh Cohen's fiscal year 2013 capital budget. The site is owned by the city.
Bunker also said in the statement that many Kingsport residents have been supportive of the project but opponents cited a fear of increased crime and desire to keep outsiders away.
At a Monday night City Council meeting, two Kingsport residents called on the aldermen and Mayor to put the brakes on the project.
John Simcox, a seven-year community member, said many residents only found out about the proposal a few weeks ago. Bunker's statement reads that Grow Annapolis started planning the garden project in 2009.
"Our community was excluded from the process of making this decision," Simcox said.
Continuing in the same vein, Margaret Kai-Zeigler, a resident and Anne Arundel County Office of Planning employee, said the city needs to communicate more with Kingsport residents and delay the project to include their input.
"This item—there's a lot of misinformation out there," Kai-Zeigler said. "The misinformation has caused a real schism in my neighborhood. I have neighbors who won't talk to each other because of this."
"I will be providing you on Thursday with all the information that you need," Finlayson told Simcox.
Bunker's letter can be read in full on the Grow Annapolis Facebook page.