New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
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Animal Architecture Awards

Farmland World – a chain of agro-tourist resorts

By Stewart Hicks and Allison Newmeyer of Design With Company, with Katharine Bayer and Hugh Swiatek

Farmland World is a chain of agro-tourist resorts sprinkled across the American Midwestern countryside. Part theme park and part working farm, guests arrive to the resort via train and stay as part of 1-day, 3-day or 5-day experience packages. Capitalizing on both recent investments in high-speed rail infrastructure and the plentiful subsidies for farming, the network of resorts combines crowd-sourced farm labor with eco-tainment.

Guests perform daily chores as self-imposed distractions from the toil of their daily lives. Among the countless activities offered, guests can choose to ride the Animal Farmatures, the dual natured farm implements that complete traditional farm tasks while performing grand rural-techno spectacles. When its time to leave for home, guests climb back into the train, weary and satisfied from their labors as they marvel at the passing landscape they helped transform.

More here.

The Nottingham Apiary

By Amelia Eiriksson, Fraser Godfrey, Ana Moldavsky, Esko Willman from the University of Nottingham

The Nottingham Apiary project addresses the problem of collapsing bee populations, upon which humans depend to pollinate food crops. This phenomenon, Colony Collapse Disorder, is attributed to many causes, however there is no conclusive evidence for any specific one. The project aims to restore bee populations locally, with the potential to be replicated in other locations around the world.

An existing derelict structure is used as framework for bee habitation, with hives gradually expanding and taking over. New elements, attached to the old, allow the process to happen. The folly creates a dialogue between the process, the surrounding area and the public, introducing the bees in a nonthreatening context. It acts as the entrance to the building. The visitor route follows The Plight of the Honey Bee installation, creating a gradual crescendo through the spaces.

More here.

Window Unit

By Crooked Works

In 1943, more than 80 percent of American households harvested food from their own Victory Gardens.” Today, the food consumed in most American households follows a much more circuitous path, resulting in increased preservatives, transportation costs and cultural uniformity. This disconnect particularly penalizes the poor, who are both more likely to live in “food deserts” and can’t afford to pay the high price of imported perishables.

Animal-populated Window Units enable the resurrection of household-based urban food production. This bottom-up agricultural strategy enlists urban dwellers who elect to stock their window space with chickens, bees, or fish in creating a new urban food system. Working at a very small scale, with eminently replicable technologies, these wall projections have the potential to link on-site agricultural production to vast numbers of independent households.

Award results here.