I’ll admit, I’ve been a fair weather rider. After hurting my back a few years ago it’s taken me a while to get back on my bike. I received an amazing birthday gift recently, a new commuter bike and I’ve been getting into the groove of riding into work. This was my first week back and today’s ride blew my mind.
It wasn’t the rush or exhilaration of riding that did it. It was who I met, saw and talked with along the way.
I ride from Kitsilano over the Burrard Bridge and along Pacific, then drop into Chinatown and over into Strathcona where our office is located in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. If you didn’t hear about it this week, our neighbours at SOLEfood Urban Farm have been building a 2 acre organic farm on the former Expo lands by BC Place on the north side of False Creek. As I was riding by I saw Seann Dory, SOLEfood’s Executive Director and stopped to have a quick chat (and give him a high-5!).
(Image from Vancouver Is Awesome)
Seann laid out their plan for growth. They’re up to 30 employees who they’ve trained and are working on their organic urban farms, all members of Vancouver’s downtown eastside community. This site is big, 4 times as large as their initial site beside the Astoria Hotel on East Hastings at Hawks. As we were talking saw SHIFT Urban Delivery ride by on one of their hybrid cargo tricycles and it hit me. It was just a few years ago when most of what you heard regarding sustainability and greenest city initiatives was just that. Talk. After years of hard work, dedication and community building these social entrepreneurs are doing it. We’re making some really cool things happen in Vancouver and it’s not just about talking the talk. Its good people, doing good work, making good things happen. It feels good to be a part of that.