The New York City Economic Development Corporation sent out an RFP for a forward thinking urban farmer to run a 200,000 square foot rooftop farm atop one of the city’s major food distribution centers at 600 Food Center Drive in the Hunts Point section of the Bronx. Talk about cutting out the middleman. Once harvested the veggies merely have to make the trip downstairs and down the street for distribution at the City’s 329-acre Food Distribution Center.
The Bronx would be joining the ranks of Bright Farms with its plans for 100,000 square feet in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Brooklyn Grange is planning 45,000 square feet in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and Gotham Greens has plans for expansion. With the newly passed Zone Green allowing for rooftop greenhouses for food production, the venture will no longer will need to clear arduous zoning hurdles should they choose to grow year round. The zoning also requires that the greenhouses capture rainwater, lightening the load on overtaxed sewers. The locale at the distribution point will also cut down on idle truck traffic and shipping costs. “With the potential construction of a new rooftop farm, the Hunts Point industrial area will be able to better provide greater quantities of produce to consumers while generating new employment opportunities for New Yorkers,” Council Speaker and likely mayoral candidate Christine Quinn said in a statement. If NYCEDC finds a taker, the Bronx could become home to one of the largest rooftop farms on the planet.