Image credit: reyburner, used under Creative Commons license.
When I wrote about how young Greeks are abandoning Athens in favor of a life in the country, I suggested that cities would do well to think about resilience, not just efficiency. How do cities continue to thrive when the economy gets tough or oil starts getting too expensive? It's obviously a big and complex question. But part of the solution might lie in programs like Transition Tufnell Park's Big Dig. What if neighborhoods could get together to start growing food?
From the recent 350 garden challenge that spread across America, to Peak Moment TV's video of what happens when neighbors remove fences and plant gardens, this is hardly the first time we've seen community groups coming together to help out one of their neighbors.
But the video is a great illustration of how this is about so much more than building food growing capacity in any one garden. Perhaps the biggest and most important benefit of any of these initiatives is their capacity to get people talking, sharing and reimagining their communities. Like the sharing of goods through StreetBank, by connecting with those around us we not only find the specific resources we might be looking for, but we set up the social infrastructure that allows us to meet future challenges too.
If that's not a good reason to talk to your neighbors, I'm not sure what is.
More on Building Community in Your Neighborhood
StreetBank Encourages Neighbors to Borrow, Lend, and Maybe Even Talk (Video)
How Portland's Tool Libraries are Building Community (Video)
The 350 Home & Garden Challenge
When Neighbors Remove Fences and Plant Gardens (Video)