Friday, May 14, 2010

LIC rooftop becomes farm

From the NY Times:

The stretch of Northern Boulevard near 36th Street in Long Island City, Queens, is about as far from bucolic as it gets: Old industrial buildings loom, traffic whizzes by, car dealerships line the street. Off in the distance, Manhattan’s skyscrapers glitter, the trains rumble, and the closest thing to a meadow is a small patch of plants the Parks Department has named Triangle 37.

But six stories up, on the roof of one of those old buildings, an ambitious farm began to take shape on Thursday. Called Brooklyn Grange — the group behind it settled on the name before they settled on their borough — it will grow tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and leafy greens amid the air-conditioning units and water tower perched on the 40,000-square foot-roof.

Rooftop farms have been appearing recently across New York and the nation, but few have the scope of Brooklyn Grange, a for-profit venture started by Ben Flanner, a transplanted Wisconsinite, and the operators of Roberta’s, a popular restaurant that has become something of a farm-to-table clubhouse in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

The group plans to sell its vegetables — selected for their ability to thrive in the sunny, windy conditions of an open city roof — from a stand at the farm, and to a few restaurants.


Anonymous said...

If these folks can find roofs sturdy enough and have drainage for when it rains, why not? In fact the city should give building owners incentives to perform this greening of roofs instead of giving incentives to build more buildings as solely as investments.

Anonymous said...


Now let's grow some pot up there and listen to the Stones!

Barbecue anyone?