Big Wheel Burger is turning food scraps into an inviting urban food garden open to all at its Cooks Street location.

Victoria restaurant welcomes spring with sustainable community garden

Big Wheel Burger gets growing with compost

Our long-awaited spring is just weeks away and if that has you keen to get growing, be inspired with a visit to one of Victoria’s favourite restaurants, turning food scraps into an inviting urban food garden open to all.

Last fall, Big Wheel Burger’s flagship location in the Cook Street Village created a community garden and seating area from unused boulevard space. Designed by Smart+Barman and built by Biophilia design collective using permeable pavers and reclaimed cedar, the garden will grow herbs and other edibles this spring with compost created from the restaurant’s food waste.

The sustainable project

“This was basically an unused boulevard maintained by the city. Now, for five years, we’ll maintain something that’s useful and beautiful,” McNeil says.

“We created it for the community, and the community can come sit there – it’s not just for Big Wheel customers.”

The space also offers learning opportunities, with coming signage to showcase the composting circle – herbs and veggies growing in compost crafted from Big Wheel Burger’s own kitchen organics and 100-per-cent-compostable packaging.

“It’s an educational tool,” says McNeil, a founding member of FED – the Food Eco District, committed to creating a carbon neutral community, beginning with restaurants.

“What better way to get some fresh air, sit and socialize and discover the possibilities of urban food gardening?”

A $5,000 boulevard improvement grant from the Fairfield Gonzales Community Association and the City of Victoria supported the $28,000 project, with Big Wheel providing the balance.

“It’s a talking point, it’s education for kids and bringing awareness,” McNeil says, noting all three Big Wheel locations also feature FED Eco Planter Boxes filled with herbs and greens.

The sustainable business model

Regularly named one of the region’s favourite burger joints, the locally grown Big Wheel Burger was founded on the “triple bottom line” philosophy of social, environmental and economic performance.

“I never knew it would be so affordable and good for our business to be sustainable,” McNeil says. “You can actually turn something that was potentially a waste-driven business into one that does something more and is valuable to the community.”

The results of a business decision aren’t always clear up front, but entrepreneurs often demonstrate a willingness to take chances, McNeil notes, challenging others to join the discussion of environmental and social sustainability.

“There’s a perception that social issues and business are at odds, but they don’t need to be,” McNeil says, pointing to the resources, creativity and progressive attitude business often brings to the table.

“It’s business and we need to prosper, but many entrepreneurs are looking for creative ways to help. There’s an ally there,” McNeil says. “We’re all in this together.”

Learn more about Big Wheel Burger’s initiatives in Cook Street Village, in Vic West at Westside Village and on Blanshard at Gateway Village.

 

Big Wheel Burger welcomes the Cook Street village community to this public seating area complete with planters, Designed by Smart+Barman and built by Biophilia design collective.

Last fall, Big Wheel Burger’s flagship location in the Cook Street Village created a community garden and seating area from unused boulevard space.

Comments are closed

Just Posted

City of Victoria to hold formal safety review after man was left hanging from raised bridge

More and more people seen ignoring safety measurements in place, city staff say

Active police incident in Langford prompts police to request nearby residents stay inside

West Shore RCMP ask public to avoid Station Avenue and Peatt Road area

Nanaimo man wanted Canada-wide after walking away from Victoria halfway house

Warrant issued for Jesse Goodale, convicted of aggravated assault

Sixties Scoop settlement tour stops in Victoria

The information session takes place on July 24 at the Sandman Hotel

Victoria Police issue warning after man left dangling from raised Johnson Street Bridge

A man bypassed safety measures and became stranded as the bridge lifted

VIDEO: Missing teens named as suspects in three northern B.C. killings

Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky are wanted in the deaths of Lucas Fowler, Chynna Deese, unknown man

POLL: Do you use a food delivery app?

With modern life becoming more hectic with each passing day and so… Continue reading

Vancouver Island teacher suspended for professional misconduct

Grade 8 shop teacher admits to use of vulgar language and profanities toward students, parents

Northern B.C. double homicide, suspicious death: A timeline of what we know

Two teens from Port Alberni are now wanted Canada-wide in connection to the three deaths

B.C. wine industry legend Harry McWatters dies

Among his accomplishments, McWatters founded the province’s first estate winery, Sumac Ridge Estate

Provincial health body refuses to release full findings of cancer triage system audit

Information and Privacy Commissioner asked to review redactions

Southern resident killer whale died of blunt trauma, likely from ship

J34 was found more than two years ago near Sechelt, but the necropsy findings have now been released

B.C. rail crossing death highlights risks for people in wheelchairs: watchdog

Transportation Safety Board points to ‘persistent risks faced by persons using assistive devices’

B.C. teens wanted in double homicide, suspicious death spotted in Manitoba

Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky were thought to have been seen in the Gillam area

Most Read