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Restoring Paradise

Toronto lost a bit of paradise when our parking lot was created many years ago. I don’t think we’ll offend Joni Mitchell, though, as we undergo expansion at the TBG.
Our parking lot’s footprint will actually shrink a bit as we increase the size of the area devoted to gardens.

Starting this spring 2019, when we sign an agreement with the city, you will see a significant change as we begin the process of creating a world-class botanical garden. Most anywhere else there is an admission fee to visit and enjoy a garden like ours. But we are committed to keeping this a free experience for the people of Toronto. That’s not easy to do without the normal sources of revenue enjoyed by other gardens. But we have a financial viability plan that includes generating revenue
through paid parking for non-members.

That means Toronto Botanical Garden members park for free. Let me repeat—FREE! Most of you reading this know the value of TBG membership already. We appreciate and thank you wholeheartedly for your support. I hope that free parking just adds to your appreciation of the beauty and unique experience of the TBG.

We expect that more visitors will join you in becoming TBG members. Not just for the free parking, but because they will come to understand the many social, cultural and environmental benefits provided by our charitable organization. I think you will all see an immediate improvement to the parking lot itself this year. Beginning in 2019, TBG staff and volunteers will maintain the narrow bands of plants that delineate parking lot rows. No doubt staff and volunteers will rise to the occasion of creating a positive first impression for visitors. They’ve been wanting to do this for a long time!

The other significant change in the offing is the creation of a new service yard in the southwest corner of Edwards Gardens (with access from the Bridle Path). Design for this new maintenance area is under way. Staff and equipment will be moving there from the area by the Barn, freeing up more prime space for visitor enjoyment. Step by step, it’s all happening!

Harry Jongerden, Garden Director

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