Toronto, Canada scientist Gordon Graff has created plans for a 58-floor concept building called the SkyFarm. The urban high-rise farm would produce a variety of crops in the heart of the city and could provide enough food for 35,000 people every day, according to Graff.
Natural~Specialty Foods Memo (NSFM) Editor's Note: Below is a sidebar to Kate Burt's feature article about urban farming and Fritz Haeg's scheme to turn residential front lawns into domestic mini-farms. NSFM has seen two comprehensive urban farming concepts thus far--this one we wrote about in Septemeber, 2007, which is a mixed-use residential building/vertical urban farm designed by Seattle, Washington's Mithun design firm--and now the edible high-rise prototype developed by Canadian scientist Gordon Graff, described in Ms. Burt's piece below and pictured at the top. Although neither one of the "urban farms" has yet to go from the design stage to reality, the concept is gaining interest. With the soaring cost of food and diminishing agricultural land, one or both of these developments just might happen sooner rather than later.
Pie in the Sky: The world's first edible high-rise
By Kate Burt
Sunday, 1 June, 2008
The potential of city-based farming could be vastly expanded if we extend upwards as well as using ground-level plots.
Of course, one major problem with growing produce on our roofs is the quantities of soil needed, which would add unfeasible amounts of weight. However, hydroponic technology – using nutrient-enriched water instead of soil – could be the solution.
Toronto scientist Gordon Graff has created plans for a 58-floor concept building – the SkyFarm – which would grow crops in the heart of the city and could provide enough food for 35,000 people every day.
Crops would be irrigated by water recycled through the building's hydroponic system and, with no soil, many diseases are ruled out – meaning no need for chemical pesticides.
Rumours abound of a similar skyscraper farm being developed in Las Vegas. It is said that the 30-storey structure would be not just about agriculture, but would house pigs too – though some have suggested the vertical pork farm could be a hoax. Punchlines on a postcard, please.