In the concrete and steel jungle that is Shanghai, the international architecture firm Sasaki’s plans for a spectacular 100-hectare urban farm is a breath of fresh air indeed! The project will add the much needed green contrast among the soaring skyscrapers of Shanghai, with the farm aiming to serve as a farming laboratory helping in meeting food requirements of almost 24 million people along with being a hub for innovation, interaction, and education on urban agriculture.
Sasaki’s plan is called Sunqiao Urban Agricultural District and comprises of vertical farms that compliment the high rising cityscape perfectly. Shangai has soaring real estate prices, so vertical building structures are both economical and shrewd.
The urban farm layout will have different types of growing platforms in separate buildings that would include algae farms, vertical walls, floating greenhouses, and seed libraries which will be grown with the help of hydroponic and aquaponic systems.
The project is mainly aimed to provide large-scale food supply along with adequate education. Sunqiao’s purpose and expected outcomes are discussed on Sasaki’s website as follows,
“This approach actively supports a more sustainable food network while increasing the quality of life in the city through a community program of restaurants, markets, a culinary academy, and pick-your-own experience” explained Sasaki.
“As cities continue to expand, we must continue to challenge the dichotomy between what is urban and what is rural. Sunqiao seeks to prove that you can have your kale and eat it too.”
Once the complex is complete, it will also be opened for visitors who will tour the interactive greenhouses, watch the unique aquaponic systems in action and marvel at the science museum that will boast various green technologies.
The center will also host family-friendly events and workshops aimed at spreading awareness among children about various agricultural techniques.