World’s largest urban farm set to open…on a Paris roof

The world’s largest urban farm is set to be opened in Paris in the year 2020 – on the rooftop of a new building currently under construction.

Two French firms – Agripolis and Cultures en Ville – are teaming up for the ambitious project, which will see 14,000m² of roof devoted to the growth of fruit, vegetables and herbs.

The farm will be situated atop a new building located at the Paris Expo Porte de Versailles exhibition centre, located to the south-west of the city centre, in the 15th arrondissement (district).

It’s envisaged that the produce produced here will be available for purchase to visitors to the facility. Produce will also be supplied to restaurants.

The farm will be operated by Agripolis while Cultures en Ville will handle the services and events held at the site.

Among the other services offered are: farm tours; workshops; spaces for rent; and events.

It’s hoped that the facility will see around one tonne of seasonal fruit and vegetables produced per day, with 140 spaces available for members of the public to rent out and use to grow their own produce.

The project is expected to receive around 10,000 visitors per year when it opens, both to the farm and various events held there, for which 500m² will be devoted.

The plants will be arranged vertically, above ground, in columns of crops and fed by rain water and biological nutrients.

Though the produce will be grown using organic principles, it cannot be labelled as such because it’s not grown in the ground – a necessity for an organic label under French regulations.

In a statement translated from French, Agripolis said that the project will “offer diversified, high-quality local produce, respecting nature’s cycles and limiting the carbon impact as much as possible”.

“The [project] partners carry an ambitious project that has all the features to become a model of innovative urban agriculture, serving a sustainable city,” the statement concluded.