Why Urban Farming
Part of the current food revolution is a growing recognition that being good stewards of the earth is simply good for us. Urban farming brings people together in a common pursuit, where labor can be shared to bring forward the bounty of the earth. Costanoa Commons Farm will have orchard, row crops, a greenhouse, chickens and other small farm animals, and aquaponics farming. By developing a small community supported agriculture program (CSA), farm participants can learn new skills while making a meaningful contribution to local food production. There will also be opportunity to care for some small farm animals, allowing our farm to contribute toward a more sustainable community while developing participants’ skills for life.
The sale of Costanoa Commons Farm produce, crafts, or other farm products such as honey, will give interested entrepreneurs an opportunity to interact with the wider community, learn important job skills, enhance self-esteem, and provide an organic, sustainable food source for the wider community. By creating a unique, urban farm so close to a downtown center we hope residents, farm enthusiasts, and people with disabilities will enjoy the many opportunities for recreation and socialization a community farm provides. Green Water Garden has proven that adults with disabilities can find fulfilling, meaningful jobs cultivating micro greens, herbs, and vegetables in its Aquaponics farm. Costanoa Commons Farm envisions expanding this social enterprise to provide more jobs and a healthy, enjoyable work life for many more people with disabilities in our community. The added benefit of aquaponics at our farm is that this method of organic agriculture is productive year-round and offers the chance to sell produce not normally found during the winter season, such as tomatoes and strawberries! Profits from the sale of produce will support the farm’s ongoing operation.
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The concept is simple…designed environments should be accessed by everyone. By creating barrier free buildings and an accessible farm, Costanoa Commons will enable people who use mobility equipment, have physical or sensory impairments, or are simply growing older and develop additional physical limitations to access all parts of the property for their enjoyment. We will design and construct building and other facilities that can be used and visited by people of all abilities. We plan to include features such as barrier-free entries, wider doorways, and moveable countertops and sinks. The farm will have wider pathways so that a wheelchair user with a companion can travel together through the property. Our greenhouses will be similarly constructed to permit access and a safe working environment for farm staff, workers, and volunteers who have various disabilities, including those who are nonambulatory. Our barn will also incorporate universal design so that everyone who works here or visits can make full use of the property.