Tony Abruscato, Director of the 811 Chicago flower and garden show, says “The 811 garden is all about bringing together urban agriculture, gardening and safe digging. It’s all about consumer safety and awareness.” 811 Chicago sponsored the garden in partnership with the Chicago Flower and Garden Show and Humana. The garden was part of the Farm to Festival area at the city’s annual food festival, Taste of Chicago. 811 Chicago is the city of Chicago’s one-call service.
Jai Kalayil, Supervising Engineer with the City of Chicago, talked with us about an area children could dig in the dirt and run into a hidden mock pipe. Even a simple home project such as putting in a mailbox post has the potential risk of hitting utilities in the ground. 811 Chicago seeks to educate the public on these often overlooked risks. Tony emphasized calling 8-1-1 as a simple to use, free service that homeowners need to use for safe digging.