D&R Greenway News

The Story of How The Abandoned Piece of Land in East Trenton Became a Farm in the City

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – July 3, 2021, Princeton ~

A Season of Change Arrives for Capital City Farm
Local Healthy Food is now a Reality for this Trenton Neighborhood

Seven years after the dream of an urban farm began in an abandoned lot next to the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen, D&R Greenway’s work to establish a farm in a food desert has become an ongoing reality.  At the end of June, D&R Greenway joined in an Agreement with the City of Trenton, owner of the land, to transfer long-term management of Capital City Farm to Mercer County.  In its first major step, the Mercer County Park Commission has hired a new manager for Capital City Farm, Logan Davis.  The Trenton Area Soup Kitchen, a partner from the beginning, will continue to serve fresh food grown at Capital City Farm.

The mark of a successful effort is to see it thrive and grow as a legacy to the original spark of an idea.

“On behalf of the Mercer County Park Commission, I would like to recognize and thank D&R Greenway Land Trust for its critical role in helping to acquire, remediate, and establish Capital City Farm in Trenton. Thanks to your early commitment from your staff and board, today Capital City Farm grows healthy food, offers learning and employment opportunities to Trenton residents, and maintains an open and green landscape to the surrounding Coalport neighborhood.”
Aaron T. Watson, Executive Director

Mercer County Park Commission

D&R Greenway’s Farm Manager Judy Burton and farm assistant Derek Branch during the 2018 growing season. Click the picture to read Derek’s inspirational story in our Fall 2016 newsletter, see pages 4-5.

From Dumping Ground to Oasis
The 2-acre Capital City Farm property was a dumping ground on North Clinton Avenue until D&R Greenway converted it into community agriculture with nearly $500,000 raised through grants and private donations.  D&R Greenway Land Trust President & CEO Linda Mead was recently quoted in City Farmer News explaining the importance of the project: “it’s the basis for providing food, for providing clean water, for providing air and beauty in places that are meaningful in a local community.”  The news article recognizes D&R Greenway’s additional food security projects, its Community Gardens at its St. Michaels Farm Preserve and new gardens to be established at Point Breeze.

“On behalf of the City of Trenton and its residents, I am personally writing to thank you and D&R Greenway Land Trust for its vision and persistence in taking the lead to establish, fund, operate and maintain Capital City Farm…. an important and integral part of the surrounding neighborhoods by providing open space, fresh and healthy food, educational opportunities, and other community benefits.”
Mayor Reed Gusciora, City of Trenton, NJ, in a letter to Linda Mead of D&R Greenway

Watercolor painting of Capital City Farm by artist and D&R Greenway Board of Trustee member, James Fiorentino.
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BACKGROUND:

D&R Greenway Land Trust, an accredited nonprofit, has saved over 22,000 acres of New Jersey land since its founding in 1989.  Preserving land for life and creating public trails grants everyone the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors. The land trust’s preserved farms and community gardens provide local organic food for our neighbors—including those most in need. D&R Greenway’s strategic land conservation and stewardship combat climate change, protect wildlife, and ensures clean drinking water for future generations. D&R Greenway’s mission is connecting land with people from all walks of life.

D&R Greenway’s Johnson Education Center, home to its art galleries in Princeton, is currently closed to ensure health and safety due to COVID.  Our outdoor trails and labyrinth are open. Visit our Facebook and Instagram pages and www.drgreenway.org to learn about the organization’s latest news and virtual programs. D&R Greenway Land Trust, One Preservation Place, Princeton NJ 08540.  The best way to reach D&R Greenway staff is by sending an e-mail to info@drgreenway.org or by calling D&R Greenway at 609-578-7470.

Our Mission: To Preserve & Care for Land and Inspire a Conservation Ethic, Now and Forever

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