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Parks and Recreation

New Garden Opens at Park de la Cruz Community Center in City Heights

garden with a mural wall and accessible garden beds, benches and shade coverings

An overgrown vacant lot in City Heights has been transformed into a garden at the Park de la Cruz Community Center. A ribbon cutting event was held on Saturday, Sept. 16, to celebrate this new garden, which has been under development since 2021 and is now ready for community use.  

Park de la Cruz Community Center opened in May 2020 with in-person programs commencing in June 2021. The center, a former YMCA building, has been transformed to include several amenities including a public gymnasium, fitness room, recreation room, sensory room, computer lab, multipurpose and community spaces, a kitchen and space for the Parks and Recreation Department’s Therapeutic Recreation and AgeWell Services programs. 

The garden has been a planned addition to the facility since it opened and was made possible by several donors and community volunteers. The Park de la Cruz Garden aligns with the Parks Master Plan, as well as the Age Friendly San Diego Action Plan, adopted by City Council in December 2021. 

The garden provides accessible garden beds, benches and shade coverings for older adults, individuals with disabilities and other community volunteers. Participants will be able to learn gardening skills, harvest fruits and vegetables, and enjoy this tranquil outdoor space. To enhance the space further, a mural was also painted on the walls surrounding the garden. The mural was designed by a local artist and community members assisted with the painting.  

“The Park de la Cruz Program Garden is a fantastic addition to the City of San Diego Parks and Recreation Department, Therapeutic Recreation and AgeWell Services’,” said Kristi Fenick, District Manager for the Parks and Recreation Department. “Because of the generous donors, numerous community agencies and volunteer support, the garden is thriving, resulting in the harvest being used for cooking classes, produce exchange, and garden/nutrition educational classes for individuals with disabilities and older adults.”