While the Occupy movement has made a lasting impression on American (and even global) political discourse, its had a pretty limited impact on the permanent physical environments in which it operates: activists have focused more on building community in the abstract sense vs. the built, physical sense. That could change somewhat this Spring as Occupy Wall Street’s Sustainability Working Group moves from the business of providing energy for encampments to addressing food poverty in New York City. The group, in partnership with EcoStation:NY, has launched a fundraising campaign for a rooftop farm project in Brooklyn.
Back in August when I wrote about The Plant, a former meatpacking warehouse turned urban farm in Chicago, I made only the briefest of mentions of the business incubation plans the founding organization envisioned for the space. The brewery planned for the space has received the most attention thus far, but if you head up to the rooftop of the building, you’ll find another sustainable business at work: The Urban Canopy. As you might imagine, they’re in the rooftop farming business, though they’re taking a quite different approach from most with their rooftop hydroponics system.