Flowers by Bob Reid

Why the re-zoning?

At the City Council meeting on Tuesday residents spoke of their concern about the effect the re-zoning of Vista Park Hill to R4, for multi-residential use, would have on their community gardens. Robin Pollard who began the Community Gardens with her husband.

William Millar spoke about the value of community gardens. He said that Community Gardens are popping up all over. He thanked Robin Pollard and her husband and more than a dozen gardeners for their work. He said that there are lots of reasons for having a community garden. The garden on Vista Park Hill has been functioning for some time. He invited the City Council to come up and see what was happening there. He said the garden is almost always attended. It is always open. People walk through on a daily basis. He says they ask questions, and often, they receive produce. He said, “You will not see encampments or criminal activity, why? “Because the gardeners are there!” He said that gardeners take a lot of pride in the garden and he would like the City to take pride in it as well.

Robin Pollard spoke and said that she came to “raise our concerns for ParkHill and the city property adjunct to the Park. She said that, “In checking out the zoning map, she had noticed that some of thte city’s property had been re-zoned R-4.”While many of us appreciate the local need for multi-residential housing in Hollister.” Park Hill is not an appropriate space for it. The top of Park Hill should be secured for future generations as some form of public or open space” . . .  “This land should be preserved as public, not sold off to R4.”

She offered that the neighbors and herself would like to work with the city to mitigate any deterioration of our neighborhood while promoting open space.

Barbara Mensch spoke on behalf of the Mom’s Club. she said that, There are monthly Garden Clubs for the Mom’s Club, as well as Harvest of the Month gatherings. She told the City Council that, “It is a really powerful place that deserves your protection.”

Recent Mayoral candidate Marty Richman noted, “You have to wonder what is happening.” “Re-zoning is done for a reason. It is not something you just wake up in the morning and say, ‘Let’s re-zone that!’ “