596 Acres is a public education project aimed at making communities in Brooklyn aware of the land resources around them. With the goal of a food sovereign New York City in mind, the project is helping neighbors form connections to the city-owned vacant lots in their lives through printed maps, signage and an online, interactive, and social-media-connected map (which works on smart phones, too!).
The online map helps people find vacant public land in their neighborhoods and provides tools to support communities organizing to get access to the land.
Since the summer of 2011, four groups who have worked with 596 Acres have negotiated agreements with NYC agencies for official access to their target lots. Each group has plans to turn the land into a community-driven public space and all will be growing food and providing educational programs. Ten other community groups are currently organizing and hope to have the keys to their lots by spring.
Find the lot in your life. Grow something. We can help.