EUROPEAN GREEN CAPITAL AWARDS ARTICLE : 12th June 2013
Today three out of four citizens in Europe live in cities and this proportion keeps increasing. With urban areas expanding, so does the demand for food. Therefore, Dublin has introduced an innovative new way to meet this food demand in its city centre – the rooftop farm. The Urban Farm is located at the Chocolate Factory building, covering the rooftop’s 400 m2 area. The project aimed to convert an area that is not utilised, into a case study for sustainable living in an urban environment.
On the rooftop, plants are grown all year round, and there’s even an indoor aquaponic and hydroponic greenhouse to encourage growth. Compost is also produced to feed the plants and is provided by City Composting Ltd, a company helping to lower the volume of Dublin’s waste. Picture courtesy of Urban Farm.
Apart from being an innovative model of sustainable living, the Urban Farm project seeks to research and demonstrate intensive urban growing techniques. Recently, the rooftop farm has begun to host events and community activities to provide people with hands-on workshops on topics such as responsible food production, carpentry, energy-saving systems, ecological cycles, and community self-sufficiency in keeping with organic and pesticide free practices.
The Urban Farm project was launched last year as a FundIt project and runs under the Community Supported Agriculture scheme. It is simple; people contribute to the farm, either financially or through labour and in return receive a share of the farm’s fresh harvest.
The Urban Farm openly encourages visitors and has organised guided tours of the rooftop farm, including the indoor Aquaponic/Hydroponic grow studio. Visitors are invited to learn about the mission behind the farm and the methods employed to grow food on city rooftops.
The European Green Capital Award strongly encourages innovative approaches to building a sustainable urban environment. Nevertheless citizen’s involvement and commitment is crucial to achieve success. This is why we are delighted to see that Urban Farm is already using a range of activities to reach communities and encourage green living.
For more information on the European Green Capital Award click here.
- See more at: http://ec.europa.eu/environment/europeangreencapital/urban-farm/#sthash.VhGLwrW9.dpuf