Sherbrooke group seeking a paved lot to “free the soil”

Sherbrooke group seeking a paved lot to “free the soil”

By Gordon Lambie

The Réseau d’espaces verts éducatif et nourricier (REVE Nourricier), a Sherbrooke-based organization focused on encouraging urban agriculture, is on the lookout for a paved lot that they can return to the earth.

Gabrielle Rondeau-Leclaire, President of REVE Nourricier, explained that the project, entitled “sous les paves” or ‘under the pavement’ is aimed at bringing community members together in an underprivileged area to“liberate the soil” and reclaim a paved space for the growth of plants and the reduction of heat islands in the city.

“The idea came from the Centre d’ecologie urbaine in Montreal,” she said, sharing that the Sherbrooke initiative is part of an effort on the part of the Montreal group to spread their concept further afield.

The idea to “sous les paves” is that once a suitable site is found and agreed upon with its owner, the organization will cut the pavement into squares which community members can then pull up by hand in a ceremonial “unpaving.” In Montreal the idea was put into practice in
alleyways, but Rondeau-Leclaire shared a hope that an “unpaved” lot could become a hub for urban agriculture and environmental education over the course of a few years.
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