A Comprehensive Urban Agriculture Plan
The year-long project will evaluate and document the city's urban agriculture, and offer policy recommendations to agencies that can or should be involved in urban agriculture projects. Urban Omnibus talks with urban food policy expert Nevin Cohen about the project.
"Urban Omnibus: What is the Five Borough Farm Project?
Nevin Cohen: Five Borough Farm is a project by the Design Trust for Public Space and Added Value, a Brooklyn-based nonprofit that operates one of the city's largest farms, to create a citywide plan to support urban agriculture in New York City. The urban agriculture movement is booming here: demand for local food production is growing, and in every corner of the city New Yorkers are developing a broad range of community gardens, rooftop farms, composting projects, and farmers markets. But right now no one has a detailed understanding of all of these activities, or hard data or tools to evaluate the benefits of agriculture as an urban land use. So what you find is city officials are reluctant to adopt the many policy recommendations advanced by advocates, or to address local food production on a citywide scale. Often city agencies and the ever-growing number of practitioners – many of whom operate on city land – work largely in isolation, lacking the systemic resources to coordinate or scale-up their efforts. There are outstanding groups like the NYC Community Gardening Coalition and NGOs like Just Food but there isn't yet an overall vision for how urban agriculture could really transform New York."