A rooftop urban farm on the site of the Anderlecht abattoirs
Redeveloping disused areas and devoting them to vegetable gardening - that’s the plan for an initial urban farm project on the roof of the Anderlecht abattoirs. A project that’s both ‘green’ and provides jobs, as a study conducted by Saint-Louis University indicates that the development of sustainable agriculture and food could create several thousand jobs in the Brussels-Capital Region.
Severn thousand seven hundred fifty-five - that’s the number of jobs that sustainable agriculture and food could create in the Brussels Region, according to a study by Saint-Louis University and the Greenloop consultancy. Jobs (in production, processing, distribution, hotels, restaurants and cafés, etc.) mainly intended for young unskilled Brussels residents.
An opportunity to be seized in our capital - all the more so as sustainable food has become a real passion for Brussels residents, as attested by the proliferation of private or collective vegetable gardens in recent years.
But developing agriculture in Brussels involves a change of scale. In this context, an initial large-scale urban farm project will be created on the roof of the new food hall of the Anderlecht abattoirs. Local products will be grown there: Brussels sprouts, asparagus, endives, mushrooms, lettuce, spinach or leeks. This 3000 m² urban farm will be subsidised by the Brussels Region and the ERDF European fund. The project will supply a new restaurant as well as a shop. The farm should be operational by mid-2014.
This rooftop urban farm is part of a total project of over 21 million euro for development of the abattoir site. This project aims to reorganise the activities of the Anderlecht abattoirs on the site by opening it to the Cureghem neighbourhood, undergoing redevelopment thanks in particular to public investments (Sustainable Neighbourhoods contracts, BRDA, etc.).
Brusselshas the capacity to reproduce the successful projects conducted in Canada, the United States or the Netherlands. The urban farm project unites profitable green economic activity and sustainable food. This project demonstrates that it is possible to optimise use of the roofs of buildings in the middle of the city, especially in commercial areas. This is a timely development in view of the demographic boom and the necessary densification of the Region; every m2 of the territory must be used wisely.
Thanks to the local production of vegetables, the direct link between producer and consumer will be further reinforced. This urban farm also provides new prospects for the young people of the neighbourhood - a complete project in terms of sustainable development!