First commercial rooftop greenhouse provides local food

In these times when land is at a premium, the motto appears to be ‘if you can’t go out, go up’.

In Montreal’s Marche Central, a glass, steel and aluminium structure extends from the top of a two-storey brick warehouse.  This is the world’s first commercial rooftop greenhouse.  It houses over 20 varieties of vegetable, each growing within its own climate zone, and the produce is used to feed 1,000 families and restaurants.

The vegetables are distributed weekly to customers of the Lufa Farms’ Community-Sponsored Agriculture box.  They go to 30 sites within three miles of the farm, from which the 1,000 families and restaurants go to collect them.

Mohammed Hage, the president and founder and three partners worked with plant scientists, architects and engineers for four years to build the $2 million greenhouse which took six months to erect and covers 31,000 square feet.

Hage and his partners are now looking for suitable rooftops in Toronto, Boston and New York City and expect to build urban greenhouses on at least two sites in 2013.

At Gabriel Ash we’re imagining just how fantastic a beautiful Western Red Cedar greenhouse would look up there.

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Author: Robert Smith