World’s Largest Rooftop Farm Planned For Brooklyn Making New York The Model For Urban Agriculture
BrightFarms’ Unique Business Model Provides Retailers with Fresh, Local Produce Year-Round
NEW YORK, NY, March 29, 2012 – It was announced today that a multi-acre farm will be built on 100,000 square feet of rooftop space in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park—making it the largest rooftop farm in the world. The state-of-the-art, hydroponic greenhouse is being built by BrightFarms, Inc. in partnership with Salmar Properties LLC. The farm will grow up to 1 million pounds of local produce per year, including tomatoes, lettuces and herbs, which will cultivate a new national model for urban agriculture.
The rooftop farm will be built on Federal Building #2, renamed Liberty View Industrial Plaza, an 8-story 1.1 million-square-foot warehouse building. Salmar Properties’ redevelopment of the building, coupled with BrightFarms’ visionary rooftop design, is part of the Bloomberg administration’s plan to revitalize Brooklyn’s industrial waterfront.
The rooftop farm will both help revitalize the building and revolutionize local produce. It will grow enough crops to meet the fresh vegetable consumption needs of up to 5,000 New Yorkers, create jobs, and prevent as much as 1.8 million gallons of storm water from going into local waterways. By eliminating the length and complexity of the produce supply chain, this farm will grow produce that is fresher, tastier, and more sustainable than produce shipped across the country.
Brooklyn Borough President, Marty Markowitz, says “This partnership and zoning initiative set an example for the nation on how to embrace rooftop urban agriculture.” The Borough President has long been supportive of zoning creativity to maximize potential for greenhouse farms citywide, which is about to bear fruit in Brooklyn.
“I am so pleased that the revitalization of Federal Building #2 is continuing,” says Congressman Jerrold Nadler. “As we watch this once-dormant industrial space recreated as a variety of innovative and productive uses, we can take great pride in the years of work and vision required to come to this point. This site is truly becoming a part of Brooklyn’s working waterfront once again. I look forward to tasting the first tomatoes and lettuce grown on its roof.”
“The partnership between BrightFarms and Salmar Properties to build the world’s largest rooftop farm is an exciting new model for sustainable, urban agriculture,” says New York City Council Speaker, Christine C. Quinn. “The farm will contribute meaningfully to the mission of FoodWorks, my vision to improve NYC’s food system by dramatically increasing local food production while positively affecting public health, the economy, and the environment.”
“As a New York-based company, we are thrilled to demonstrate the significant role that cities can play in meeting the nation’s insatiable demand for sustainable, local produce,” says BrightFarms CEO Paul Lightfoot. “Our mission is to increase the availability of locally grown produce nationwide; building the world’s largest rooftop farm is a huge step towards our goal.”
Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz will announce the partnership between Salmar and BrightFarms on April 5, 2012, at a celebration of Brooklyn local food. The celebration will be co-hosted by New York Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn, Chef Mario Batali, Former Chairman of A&P Christian Haub, and Food, Inc. Director Robert Kenner.