A farmer based in Brooklyn has come up with an idea that not only honors a historic black community but also gives back to present ones. Amber Tamm, a horticulturist and urban farmer who works at the Brooklyn Grange rooftop farm, told Fast Company about her proposal to convert 14 acres of Central Park into a farm that would feed Manhattanites in need.
Brooklyn Grange Sunset Park, courtesy of Brooklyn Grange
Brooklyn Grange has opened its third rooftop farm at the Liberty View building along the Sunset Park waterfront. The new facility is the largest rooftop farm in New York City, encompassing 140,000 square feet. In addition to a 55,000-square-foot garden, the space also features a 5,000-square-foot greenhouse with microgreen and hydroponic growing areas and a 6,000-square-foot indoor space that will host a range of community events throughout the year.
Image courtesy of Gotham Greens.
A new bill introduced in New York City Council Thursday addresses the need for an urban agriculture plan that doesn’t fall through the cracks of the city’s zoning and building regulations, the Wall Street Journal reports. The bill, introduced by Councilman Rafael Espinal and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and assigned to the Land Use Committee, also raises the possibility of an office of urban agriculture. If a New York City farm bill seems surprising, you may also be surprised to know that NYC has the country’s largest urban agriculture system, including community gardens, rooftop farms and greenhouses.
Thanks to Growkit, a farming kit for beginners developed by Portugal-based startup Noocity, city dwellers short on time and space can still take a stab at gardening and harvest their own organic food (h/t Gearminded). The kit includes an entire gardening system–a Growbag irrigated planter, a Growpack with seasonal plants, potting soil, fertilizer, and step-by-step audio instructions–all delivered right to your doorstep.
6sqft’s series “Where I Work” takes us into the studios, offices, and off-beat workspaces of New Yorkers across the city. In this installment, we take a tour of the Bed-Stuy urban farm Square Roots. Want to see your business featured here? Get in touch!
In a Bed-Stuy parking lot, across from the Marcy Houses (you’ll know this as Jay-Z’s childhood home) and behind the hulking Pfizer Building, is an urban farming accelerator that’s collectively producing the equivalent of a 20-acre farm. An assuming eye may see merely a collection of 10 shipping containers, but inside each of these is a hydroponic, climate-controlled farm growing GMO-free, spray-free, greens–“real food,” as Square Roots calls it. The incubator opened just this past November, a response by co-founders Kimbal Musk (Yes, Elon‘s brother) and Tobias Peggs against the industrial food system as a way to bring local food to urban settings. Each vertical farm is run by its own entrepreneur who runs his or her own sustainable business, selling directly to consumers. 6sqft recently visited Square Roots, went inside entrepreneur Paul Philpott‘s farm, and chatted with Tobias about the evolution of the company, its larger goals, and how food culture is changing.