Stir It Up
Black activist's food for thought
James Beard award underscores Malik Yakini's importance to movement
Published: September 12, 2012
Local food and urban agriculture activists are intent on creating a system in Detroit that provides fresh, healthy food in a system where Detroiters also reap the financial rewards of ownership from food production, processing and sales. They're literally building it from the ground up.
I got a call from City Councilman Ken Cockrel to gently pull my coat about my last column regarding land sales in Detroit. He pointed out that the city sale of some 1,900 lots to Hantz Farms is not a done deal. I suspect there is a bit of politicking on his part here, but he says that City Council is advocating that the deal with Hantz be done with a development agreement that will give the city some say in what happens on that property. John Hantz says that he wants to farm high-value hardwoods on the land. However, if the land is sold without a development agreement, Hantz could "flip the script" and do anything he wants on the property. Cockrel sits on council's planning and economic development standing committee that is chaired by Saunteel Jenkins. Marcell Todd, director of the City Planning Commission, expects to hold public information sessions on the drafting of ordinance language on urban agriculture and land sales. Wednesday, Sept. 19, at St. Maron Hall (11466 Kercheval St.), Monday, Sept. 24 at Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church (2080 W. Grand Blvd.) and Tuesday, Sept. 25 at Greater Grace Temple (23500 W. Seven Mile Rd.). After those meetings, all of which are at 6 p.m., the commission will draft ordinance language to present to City Council.
Larry Gabriel is a writer, musician and former editor of Metro Times. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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