World’s first ‘biocellar’ to be built in Cleveland’s Hough neighborhood
Jean Loria, a permaculture designer, leans on the gate of a home that will be dismantled to make way for the first-ever “biocellar,” a greenhouse that is built using the basement of an abandoned house. Photo by Gus Chan, The Plain Dealer
“Chateau Hough” – third growing season with 294 vines of red and white grapes set in 14 rows on the formerly foreclosed property.
By Dave Davis
The Plain Dealer
November 20, 2012
CLEVELAND, Ohio — Jean Loria looks up at a crumbling, 112-year-old home on East 66th Street and in it sees Cleveland’s future.
More specifically, the permaculture designer sees the world’s first “biocellar,” a term she coined in 2006 to describe her idea of reusing abandoned homes by carefully tearing them down, then reinforcing the existing basement and topping it with a slanted, greenhouselike roof that would make it possible to grow crops inside.
It’s the latest project in an urban agriculture movement that’s sweeping Cleveland, contributing to the city’s growing national reputation as an innovator in this area.
No doubt a biocellar would be a talker — a futuristic-looking structure that would anchor neighborhood gardens and produce its own food.
Jean Loria, a permaculture designer, leans on the gate of a home that will be dismantled to make way for the first-ever “biocellar,” a greenhouse that is built using the basement of an abandoned house.
Even in the dead of winter, the temperature below the frost line of the biocellar would be at least in the mid-50s, making it the perfect place to grow mushrooms or strawberries, or raise tilapia fish.