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  • Supervisors approve agreement to operate Mission Garden

    Aug 01, 2017 | Read More News
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    At its Aug. 1 meeting, the Pima County Board of Supervisors approved in a 5-0 vote an agreement to have the nonprofit Friends of Tucson’s Birthplace (FOTB) handle development, operation and management of Mission Garden, a re-creation of the Spanish Colonial walled garden that was part of Tucson’s historic San Agustín Mission.

    Located on its original site west of downtown Tucson at the corner of Mission Road and Mission Lane, the Garden features heirloom Sonoran Desert-adapted fruit orchards and vegetable gardens interpreting 4,000 years of agriculture in Tucson. The agreement provides $50,000 a year for five years to enable FOTB to operate and maintain the premises as a public park to preserve the archaeological and cultural significance of the site. 

    Pima County obtained the premises to protect its archaeological and cultural significance and integrity. Among the improvements outlined in a 2016 Master Plan are: construction, operation, and maintenance of the administration and kitchen buildings and restrooms; a recreated casita; pathways; attendant utilities and new plantings.
    Mission Garden
    Father Eusebio Francisco Kino named the O’odham village “San Cosme de Tucson” in the 1690s using the native name of “Stjuckson,” which gave modern Tucson its name. It was part of the 18th century Mission San Agustín del Tucson that included the Convento, Chapel and Mission Garden.

    Linda Mayro, director of Pima County’s Office of Sustainability and Conservation, initiated the County acquisition of the Mission Garden in 1997 with bond funds and worked with the City, Rio Nuevo, and the Friends of Tucson’s Birthplace for a number of years.
    Since Mission Garden is an archaeologically sensitive area, the Office of Sustainability and Conservation agreed to manage the agreement to ensure it meets its goals as a heritage education park, oversee any improvements and approve and reimburse costs.

    Mayro noted that “the acquisition, preservation and development of the Mission Garden by Pima County and the preservation of the San Agustín Convento and Chapel by the City of Tucson to create a heritage education park is profoundly important in providing the Tucson region with the opportunity to know the place of its origins.”

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