Previously, I wrote about an exciting project on the South Side of Chicago called The Plant. As part of this “vertical farming” project the Plant has a new tenant that will be growing on the rooftop. The Urban Canopy’s vision is to show how rooftop farming is a vital part of the urban agriculture movement to create a sustainable and equitable food system. For 2012, The Urban Canopy will build a 3000 square feet farm on the rooftop!
This farm will produce over 2500 pounds of fresh fruits and veggies in the first year alone. The main growing methods will include a combination of automatically irrigated raised beds, bucket-ponics, and lightweight hydroponic systems. Lots of pictures are posted on TUC’s flickr page. Once the farm is operating, the plan is to hire a few employees from the Back of the Yards community. A portion of the produce will be donated to local food banks and sold at reduced rates to neighborhood residents; the remaining portion will be sold directly at farmers markets and to green restaurants.
This project is currently going through a Kickstarter Campaign to raise the funds required to actually build the farm out in March. Consider pledging to the campaign to see exactly how you can enable this concept and rooftop farming overall. The various rewards include sustainable gear like organic cotton t-shirts/bags, tours of the building and rooftop farm, a veggie share of the 2012 produce, even up to a catered dinner ON the rooftop or naming rights to the farm! Alex also told me that there will be volunteering opportunities and other ways to get directly involved throughout the year. Please share this link with your friends and family to help the project: http://kck.st/zMSuQD.
Thanks so much for listening to us tell you about this awesome project in Chicago!