New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
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Philadelphia City Planning Commission imagines Philadelphia in 2035

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Philadelphia 2035 Comprehensive Plan

Agriculture in PHILADELPHIA2035 is a viable economic driver with small, community-oriented farms. Philadelphians in all neighborhoods will have easy access to fresh food.

Agriculture Idea: Rooftop Greenhouses

An interesting idea of utilizing existing infrastructure is to create greenhouses on the rooftops of large Center City buildings. These greenhouses could incubate seedlings and grow vegetables throughout the year.

Agriculture is a community amenity

The common thread among participants’ ideas for agriculture is that it be community-based. Participants see community gardens or neighborhood-based, small-scale farms as the best way to take advantage of small parcels of vacant land and ensure that agriculture has direct connection with residents. Most participants see agriculture as a venue for community involvement and beautification.

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November 10, 2010   Comments Off on Philadelphia City Planning Commission imagines Philadelphia in 2035

Rooftop to Tabletop: Urban Farming Spreads Roots in Chicago

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Mike Repkin envisions a series of rooftop farms in Chicago, like this one that he planted and maintains. Photo by Robert Thornton.

50 feet from farm to market and much of that distance is vertical

By Shanti Menon
One Earth
November 9, 2010

Excerpt:

Repkin started his farm in 2006 with Urban Habitat Chicago, a nonprofit group he helped found. The plants and soil sit atop a green roof system made of multiple layers of filtering and insulating materials. Repkin uses no pesticides or synthetic fertilizers and chooses each plant carefully to benefit the rooftop ecosystem. The cover crop of white clover, for example, produces a fibrous root system that defends against invaders and fixes nitrogen to help fertilize the soil. He’s got native prairie plants to bring in beneficial insects. Herbs like basil fetch a good price at the market — a profit incentive for urban farmers and building owners.

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November 10, 2010   1 Comment

Vancouver high school garden project grows into full-scale urban farm

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Kevin Liu, 16, and Angela Ho, 15, collect compost from neighbourhood around Windermere Secondary in Vancouver.
Photograph by: Glenn Baglo, PNG

Windermere secondary students collecting compost from local schools, restaurants

By Randy Shore
Vancouver Sun
Nov. 9, 2010

Excerpt:

During the school year, most of the produce is used by the school cafeteria. When school lets out the students who work on the garden through their summer vacation take the produce home or donate it to neighbourhood house food programs.

“When everything seems to come out of a factory, it’s nice that we can grow food ourselves and it’s really simple,” said Lau, who tries to bring the message home by talking to his mother about how to make Earthfriendly food choices. “She mostly worries about price, so it’s a bit of struggle.”

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November 10, 2010   1 Comment