San Diego is studying the potential impacts of urban agriculture on the local food system
San Diego City College’s Seeds at City Urban Farm. Link here.
By Dave Rice
San Diego Reader
July 26, 2011
San Diego is studying the potential impacts of urban agriculture on the local food system. A report issued to the City Council’s Committee on Land Use and Housing dated July 12 covered three potential changes to zoning law that would bring healthier food into the community.
The first point addressed concerned the creation of a new land use designation: “retail farms.” These farms would be fewer than 4 acres in size, and would have a minimum of 1,000 square feet of retail space for each acre of land used. Using vertical growing techniques, produce could be grown using 85% less water and 70% less land than a conventional farm.
Because food grown at such a farm would be sold on-site, environmental impact would be reduced by eliminating the need to transport food first from a farm to a distribution center and then on to a retail outlet where it would be made available to the end consumer. Skipping these steps would also allow the produce to be picked and sold at peak ripeness, increasing the nutritional value of crops.
Areas suggested for such a use type include vacant parking lots, rooftops of other businesses, and existing buildings to be converted for indoor growing. Each small-scale farm could create up to 15 jobs.