Urban Vertical Farming - The Future of Our City?

Real Estate Agent

In many areas of the world people use step-farming, or vertical farming, to efficiently utilize awkward terrain or limited flat spaces in order to grow food.  Now a new eco-friendly urban garden concept is on the horizon that may begin to change the face of urban food production and proximity to nature.  New urban vertical farming projects like those featured on Treehugger.com show that urbanites can farm even within the landscape limitations of major cities.  These designs better utilize our natural resources and bring city people closer to food sources, benefiting both people and the earth.

When New York magazine asked four architects to dream up proposals for a lot on Canal Street, Work AC came up with vertical farming plans.  Work AC principals Dan Wood and Amale Andraos explain, "We thought we'd bring the farm back to the city and stretch it vertically.  We are interested in urban farming and the notion of trying to make our cities more sustainable...Underneath is what appears to be a farmers market, selling what grows above."


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Li Read
Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring) - Salt Spring Island, BC
Caring expertise...knowledge for you!

Great post -- thanks for sharing this unique (& timely!) info.


Jul 02, 2008 07:50 AM #1
Roxanne Christensen

A complimentary solution with vertical farming is sub-acre farming. A sub-acre farming method now being practiced throughout the U.S. and Canada is called SPIN-Farming. SPIN stands for S-mall P-lot IN-tensive, and it makes it possible to earn significant income from growing vegetables on land bases under an acre in size. SPIN farmers utilize relay cropping to increase yield and achieve good economic returns by growing only the most profitable food crops tailored to local markets. SPIN's growing techniques are not, in themselves, breakthrough. What is novel is the way a SPIN farm business is run. SPIN provides everything you'd expect from a good franchise: a business plan, marketing advice, and a detailed day-to-day workflow. In standardizing the system and creating a reproducible process it really isn't any different from McDonalds. So by offering a non-technical, easy-to-understand and inexpensive-to-implement farming system, it allows many more people to farm, wherever they live, as long as there are nearby markets to support them, and it removes the two big barriers to entry - sizeable acreage and significant start-up capital. 
While vertical farming will still take some time to get off the ground, sub-are farming is already showing how agriculture can be integrated into the built environment in an economically viable manner. You can see SPIN farmers in action at www.spinfarming.com

Jul 03, 2008 04:10 AM #2
B. Robert
Washington, DC
Urban Discoveries Living

Li and Roxanne,

Thank you so much for your comments.  I was not aware of the spin farming iniative but you have given me incentive to check into it further.  Stay tuned there might be a blog on it!

Jennifer - Urban Discoveries Blogger

Jul 09, 2008 11:04 AM #3
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