BUILDINGS THAT GROW FOOD

Your source for vertical farming and urban agriculture news, business, and design.

Greenhouse Energy Conservation Extravaganza! September 4th, Vermont

Greenhouse Energy Extravaganza 

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Building-Integrated Agriculture Revisited

We have been reviewing our Building-Integrated Agriculture (BIA) tagged blog posts today and re-learning about the many possible benefits of integrating agriculture into the urban environment. BIA concepts present very interesting strategies towards the development of sustainable, regenerative, and resilient cities. Hyper-local food security is one for example, and there are many others to consider: energy retention, waste reuse, water collection and management, education and research, socio-economic impact, transit, and mixed-use zoning to name a few.

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Concept Urban Greenhouse Retrofit – Farm City - www.farmcity.eu

Rather unfairly, BIA gets less attention than vertical farming despite offering a more refined balance between the aesthetic and the functional. BIA is not only about producing food, like many of the warehouse farms or “plant factories” that we currently see developing around the world: it is at least equally about well-considered design that integrates both the aesthetic, and the functionality of an urban farm.  Technology is the main topic of discussion in the case of vertical farming, while in Building-Integrated Agriculture it is the executed synergies between the farm and the surrounding urban space around it.

This is what BIA leader Oscar Rodriguez will be speaking about at the International Conference on Vertical Farming and Urban Agriculture 2014 in Nottingham, UK on the 9-10th of September. Oscar has developed a code for how agriculture is integrated into buildings. BIA asks: Was the design a retrofit to an existing structure or a holistic new build? What growing systems are used to produce the food? What is the primary purpose of the urban farm? Is it enclosed and completely artificially lit or is it exposed to sunlight? At least knowing these factors and others determine if the integration of urban agriculture has been well planned or not.

Oscar has taken on the challenge to codify the many ways that vertical farming and urban agriculture is integrated into structures. Check out the first edition of Oscar’s code on the Association for Vertical Farming global map of urban agriculture by clicking on an icon and learning more about its integration. 

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The Cube - Architecture & Food 

Oscar is doing more than just clearing up misconceptions: he is driving a vision of the future of resilient cities. He runs a BIA design consultancy in London called Architecture & Food. Check out his well-considered concept designs of London housing typologies that include rooftop greenhouses and vertical farming facades. 

Join the discussion on Oscar’s popular BIA LinkedIn group

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Mohamed Hage of Lufa Farms

One to read!

This article sums up the trend towards urban greenhouses and the still lingering gaps preventing urban agriculture businesses from scaling up. An interesting read into how Dr. Dickson Despommier’s vision of vertical farms has yet to be fully realized and what is happening in the emerging industry today. Ideas for innovation courtesy of Lufa Farms in Montreal.  

Read more…

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Read more: http://www.mnn.com/your-home/organic-farming-gardening/blogs/super-futuristic-hong-kong-skyscraper-is-topped-with-rice#ixzz3AyhtNIFK Read more: http://www.mnn.com/your-home/organic-farming-gardening/blogs/super-futuristic-hong-kong-skyscraper-is-topped-with-rice#ixzz3AyhtNIFK Read more: http://www.mnn.com/your-home/organic-farming-gardening/blogs/super-futuristic-hong-kong-skyscraper-is-topped-with-rice#ixzz3AyhtNIFK Read more: http://www.mnn.com/your-home/organic-farming-gardening/blogs/super-futuristic-hong-kong-skyscraper-is-topped-with-rice#ixzz3AyhtNIFK Read more: http://www.mnn.com/your-home/organic-farming-gardening/blogs/super-futuristic-hong-kong-skyscraper-is-topped-with-rice#ixzz3AyhtNIFK

Towering edifices that incorporate agriculture — farmscrapers, if you will — make for solid gold in the eye-popping conceptual design imagery department. Wild and wonderful in concept, these plant-studded structures present a somewhat sobering glimpse into a land-starved future where there’s nowhere for commercial food production to go but up.  When it comes to multitasking, an aggressively idiosyncratic conceptual skyscraper from Mexico City-based Studio Cachoua Torres Camilletti (CTC) blows other visionary vertical farming proposals out of the water and then some. The World Architecture Festival-shortlisted proposal, simply titled “Hong Kong Skyscraper,” incorporates housing, commerce, cultural programming, public transit, rainwater harvesting, renewable energy production, and fish farming into a giant, plant-clad package that looms precariously above the Hong Kong skyline. Front and center, however, is Hong Kong Skyscraper’s futuristic presentation of the terraced paddy field, a staple of rice cultivation that’s been a familiar sight in mountainous areas of China and Southeast Asia for thousands of years.


Read more on Mother Nature Network

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agritecture:
A Timeline of Vertical Farming by Jessica Piccolino
600 BC - King Nebuchadnezzar of ancient Babylon constructed the Hanging Gardens of Babylon for his homesick wife, Amyitis. The Hanging Gardens encompassed an array of plants and trees, imported from Medes, overhanging the terraces within the city’s walls and up the sides of the mountain. Since the area suffered a dry climate, the gardens were watered using a chain pull system, which carried water from the Euphrates River and streamed it to each landing of the garden (Krystek).

1150 AD – Aztec Indians created chinampas, which were floating gardens of rectangular plots built on swamps. Since they were incapable of growing crops on the lake’s marshy shore, they built rafts out of reeds, stalks, and roots, topped the rafts with soil and mud from the bottom of the lake, and then drifted out to the center of the water. Crops would grow on top of the rafts as their roots grew through the rafts and down into the water. The rafts often attached together to form floating fields the size of islands (Turner).
1627 – Sir Francis Bacon first introduced the theory of hydroponic gardening and farming methods in his book Sylva Sylvarum, in which he established the idea of growing terrestrial plants without soil (Saylor).
1699 – English scientist, John Woodward, conducted water culture experiments with spearmint and found that plants would grow better in less pure water than they would in distilled water and that plants derive minerals from soil mixed into water solutions (Turner).
1909 – The earliest drawing of a vertical farm was published in Life Magazine, depicting an open-air building of vertically stacked stories of homes cultivating food for consumption (Jurkiewicz).
1915 - American geologist Gilbert Ellis Bailey coined the term “vertical farming” in his book, “Vertical Farming,” in which he introduced a method of underground farming contingent on the use of explosives. Multiplying the depth of fertile land, such explosives allow and enable farmers to farm deeper, while increasing area and securing larger crops. Bailey focused on less land rather than expanding as he observed it was more profitable to double the depth than double the area (Globacorp).
1922 - Seeking efficient techniques to house sizeable communities of people, Swiss architect Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, “Le Corbusier,” developed Immeubles-Villas, his project consisting of five-story blocks into which one hundred singular apartments are stacked on top of one another. The plan’s basic unit is the single-person apartment, each isolated from its neighbors, giving them all secluded open space imbedded with greenery (Gallagher).
1937 - In a scientific journal article, William Frederick Gericke coined the term “hydroponics,” the process of growing plants in sand, gravel, or liquid, with added nutrients but without soil combining “hydro” meaning water, and “ponos” meaning labor (Jones).
1940 – Hydroponic systems were used in the Pacific during World War II, where US troops cultivated fresh lettuce and tomatoes on barren islands (Jones).
1972 - SITE (Sculpture in the Environment) proposed the concept “Highrise of Homes,” which calls for a conventional steel tower framework accommodating dirt plots, as it supports a vertical community of private homes (SITE).
1975 – Allan Cooperman introduced the nutrient film technique in which a thin film of nutrient solution flows through plastic channels, which contain the plant roots (Jones).
1989 – Architect Kenneth Yeang envisioned mixed-use buildings that move seamlessly with green space in which plant life can be cultivated within open air, known as vegetated architecture. This approach to vertical farming is based on personal and community use rather than production and distribution matters (Mulder).
1999 – American ecologist Dr. Dickson Despommier reinvented vertical farming, as it emerged at Columbia University, promoting the mass cultivation of plant and animal life for commercial purposes in skyscrapers (Globacorp). Vertical farms, several floors tall, will be sited in the heart of the world’s urban centers, providing sustainable production of a secure and diverse food supply, and the eventual restoration of ecosystems that have been sacrificed for horizontal farming (Despommier).
2006 –  Nuvege, the forerunner in technology for the innovative growth method of hydroponically grown vegetables, developed their proprietary lighting network, which increases the return rate of vegetable growth by balancing light emissions that also advance photosynthesis through amplified levels of carbon dioxide (Inada).
2009 – Sky Green Farms built a vertical farm consisting of over 100 nine-meter tall towers in Singapore where green vegetables such as bak choi and Chinese cabbage are grown, stacked in greenhouses, and sold at local supermarkets (Doucleff). Singapore’s vertical farm is the world’s first water-driven, tropical vegetable urban vertical farm that uses green urban solutions to maintain enhanced green sustainable production of safe, fresh and delicious vegetables, using minimum land, water and energy resources,” (SkyGreens). It uses sunlight as its energy source, and captured rainwater to drive a pulley system to rotate the plants on the grow racks, ensuring an even circulation of sunlight for all the plants (Despommier).
2011 – Dutch agricultural company, PlantLab uses red and blue LEDs instead of sunlight in their vertical farms and grow plants in completely controlled environments. By giving the plants only blue and red light, PlantLab can avoid heating its plants up needlessly, leaving more energy for growth (Hodson).
2012 – Farmed Here, a sustainable indoor vertical farming facility opened in a 90,000 square foot post-industrial building in Bedford Park, IL. Fresh, healthy, local greens such as arugula, basil, and sweet basil vinaigrette are produced here, away from the bugs, diseases, and weather that impact most produce today (Despommier).
2012 – Local Garden, North America’s first ever VertiCrop farm, was constructed in Vancouver, Canada, shifting sustainable farming and food production practices. VertiCrop, a new technology for growing healthy, natural vegetables in a controlled environment maximizes space usage and eliminates need for pesticides. The garden is capable of growing and harvesting up to 3,500 pounds of a variety of fresh greens every week, such as kales, spinach, arugula, endive, lettuce, bak choi, escarole, basil, parsley, chards, etc. (Despommier).
SOURCE

agritecture:

A Timeline of Vertical Farming by Jessica Piccolino

600 BC - King Nebuchadnezzar of ancient Babylon constructed the Hanging Gardens of Babylon for his homesick wife, Amyitis. The Hanging Gardens encompassed an array of plants and trees, imported from Medes, overhanging the terraces within the city’s walls and up the sides of the mountain. Since the area suffered a dry climate, the gardens were watered using a chain pull system, which carried water from the Euphrates River and streamed it to each landing of the garden (Krystek).

1150 AD – Aztec Indians created chinampas, which were floating gardens of rectangular plots built on swamps. Since they were incapable of growing crops on the lake’s marshy shore, they built rafts out of reeds, stalks, and roots, topped the rafts with soil and mud from the bottom of the lake, and then drifted out to the center of the water. Crops would grow on top of the rafts as their roots grew through the rafts and down into the water. The rafts often attached together to form floating fields the size of islands (Turner).

1627 – Sir Francis Bacon first introduced the theory of hydroponic gardening and farming methods in his book Sylva Sylvarum, in which he established the idea of growing terrestrial plants without soil (Saylor).

1699 – English scientist, John Woodward, conducted water culture experiments with spearmint and found that plants would grow better in less pure water than they would in distilled water and that plants derive minerals from soil mixed into water solutions (Turner).

1909 – The earliest drawing of a vertical farm was published in Life Magazine, depicting an open-air building of vertically stacked stories of homes cultivating food for consumption (Jurkiewicz).

1915 - American geologist Gilbert Ellis Bailey coined the term “vertical farming” in his book, “Vertical Farming,” in which he introduced a method of underground farming contingent on the use of explosives. Multiplying the depth of fertile land, such explosives allow and enable farmers to farm deeper, while increasing area and securing larger crops. Bailey focused on less land rather than expanding as he observed it was more profitable to double the depth than double the area (Globacorp).

1922 - Seeking efficient techniques to house sizeable communities of people, Swiss architect Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, “Le Corbusier,” developed Immeubles-Villas, his project consisting of five-story blocks into which one hundred singular apartments are stacked on top of one another. The plan’s basic unit is the single-person apartment, each isolated from its neighbors, giving them all secluded open space imbedded with greenery (Gallagher).

1937 - In a scientific journal article, William Frederick Gericke coined the term “hydroponics,” the process of growing plants in sand, gravel, or liquid, with added nutrients but without soil combining “hydro” meaning water, and “ponos” meaning labor (Jones).

1940 – Hydroponic systems were used in the Pacific during World War II, where US troops cultivated fresh lettuce and tomatoes on barren islands (Jones).

1972 - SITE (Sculpture in the Environment) proposed the concept “Highrise of Homes,” which calls for a conventional steel tower framework accommodating dirt plots, as it supports a vertical community of private homes (SITE).

1975 – Allan Cooperman introduced the nutrient film technique in which a thin film of nutrient solution flows through plastic channels, which contain the plant roots (Jones).

1989 – Architect Kenneth Yeang envisioned mixed-use buildings that move seamlessly with green space in which plant life can be cultivated within open air, known as vegetated architecture. This approach to vertical farming is based on personal and community use rather than production and distribution matters (Mulder).

1999 – American ecologist Dr. Dickson Despommier reinvented vertical farming, as it emerged at Columbia University, promoting the mass cultivation of plant and animal life for commercial purposes in skyscrapers (Globacorp). Vertical farms, several floors tall, will be sited in the heart of the world’s urban centers, providing sustainable production of a secure and diverse food supply, and the eventual restoration of ecosystems that have been sacrificed for horizontal farming (Despommier).

2006 – Nuvege, the forerunner in technology for the innovative growth method of hydroponically grown vegetables, developed their proprietary lighting network, which increases the return rate of vegetable growth by balancing light emissions that also advance photosynthesis through amplified levels of carbon dioxide (Inada).

2009 – Sky Green Farms built a vertical farm consisting of over 100 nine-meter tall towers in Singapore where green vegetables such as bak choi and Chinese cabbage are grown, stacked in greenhouses, and sold at local supermarkets (Doucleff). Singapore’s vertical farm is the world’s first water-driven, tropical vegetable urban vertical farm that uses green urban solutions to maintain enhanced green sustainable production of safe, fresh and delicious vegetables, using minimum land, water and energy resources,” (SkyGreens). It uses sunlight as its energy source, and captured rainwater to drive a pulley system to rotate the plants on the grow racks, ensuring an even circulation of sunlight for all the plants (Despommier).

2011 – Dutch agricultural company, PlantLab uses red and blue LEDs instead of sunlight in their vertical farms and grow plants in completely controlled environments. By giving the plants only blue and red light, PlantLab can avoid heating its plants up needlessly, leaving more energy for growth (Hodson).

2012 – Farmed Here, a sustainable indoor vertical farming facility opened in a 90,000 square foot post-industrial building in Bedford Park, IL. Fresh, healthy, local greens such as arugula, basil, and sweet basil vinaigrette are produced here, away from the bugs, diseases, and weather that impact most produce today (Despommier).

2012 – Local Garden, North America’s first ever VertiCrop farm, was constructed in Vancouver, Canada, shifting sustainable farming and food production practices. VertiCrop, a new technology for growing healthy, natural vegetables in a controlled environment maximizes space usage and eliminates need for pesticides. The garden is capable of growing and harvesting up to 3,500 pounds of a variety of fresh greens every week, such as kales, spinach, arugula, endive, lettuce, bak choi, escarole, basil, parsley, chards, etc. (Despommier).

SOURCE

Comments
agritecture:
New Kids on the Block: Edenworks wants to disrupt the failing food system
Edenworks is developing the future of food infrastructure. We design, build, and operate fully automated aquaponic farms on urban rooftops, then sell our organic, sustainable, locally grown seafood and produce directly to restaurants and other foodservice businesses. Our goal is to disrupt the factory farm system through a resource efficient and scalable solution for local food growing and sourcing. By targeting the supply side of food, Edenworks can seamlessly change the way we all eat. 
http://edenworks.org/

agritecture:

New Kids on the Block: Edenworks wants to disrupt the failing food system

Edenworks is developing the future of food infrastructure. We design, build, and operate fully automated aquaponic farms on urban rooftops, then sell our organic, sustainable, locally grown seafood and produce directly to restaurants and other foodservice businesses. Our goal is to disrupt the factory farm system through a resource efficient and scalable solution for local food growing and sourcing. By targeting the supply side of food, Edenworks can seamlessly change the way we all eat

http://edenworks.org/

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