thousands of urban-dwellers to abandon the cities in favor of long-distance commutes to
new homes in less populated areas. Remaining behind were thousands of residents unable to
relocate due to lack of transportation and affordable housing. Over the years, major manufacturing
companies also chose to relocate -- many settled in the suburbs and others migrated to remote off-shore
locations - - generating a cascading effect of small-business collapse and economic breakdown. By the
1990's, supermarkets, corner grocery stores, and other retail shops had all but vanished, and within a few
years many formerly middle-class metropolitan neighborhoods had become identified as "food deserts. "
Currently, within the United States, there are approximately 6,500 deprived and struggling low-income
food-desert communities -- with over eighty percent located in large metropolitan areas.
The Department of Agriculture defines a "Food Desert" as a low-income housing tract where at
least thirty per cent of the population (many without transportation) reside one mile or more from a
supermarket or corner grocery store. These under-served neighborhoods are the government
census tracts where 20 per cent or more of residents live below poverty level.
in food desert communities without major supermarkets, small business services, civic oversight, or
recreational opportunities. Lacking access to grocery stores, and fresh produce, local populations have
become dependent upon fast-food outlets and convenience stores for their daily nutritional needs.
THE FARM-TO-TABLE FOOD PARK
COMMERCIAL AND SERVICE DIVISIONS
The following eight divisions will be included in the Food Park Model:
(1) AN URBAN FARM WITH AQUA-CULTURE COMPONENTS; (2) SUPERMARKET'; (3) RESTAURANTS;
(4) TAKE-OUT CORRIDOR AND PRODUCE STAND; (5) COOL PLANET GOURMET (a fund-raising division
for the manufacturing and sale of prepared foods -- all profits dedicated to the support of Food Park edu-
cational programs); (6) LOADING ZONES FOR SCHEDULED SHUTTLE BUS SERVICES; (7) A MULTI-
PURPOSE COMMUNITY CENTER for food demonstrations and family cook-ins, health education programs
for adults and children, public meeting rooms, and an auditorium for the arts and other community pro-
grams (the Community Center blueprints will include optional automated panels to accommodate periodic
health-screening clinics); (8) SPORTS AND ARTS ACTIVITY CENTER for after-school programs and weekend
comprising the eight divisions listed above, or a number of buildings positioned as a unified campus.
The Food-Park illustration above is one example. Other choices may be similar to the unique photos and
images referenced on-line as "Urban Farms of the Future." Many of the renderings are high-rise -- others
single-story. Numerous farms are built along river banks, others buried among skyscrapers in central cities
-- all with multiple cultivation methods featuring rotating growing walls, roof-fields, planter boxes, circular
planting beds, recycled water systems and fountains, stacked hi-rise growing platforms, aquaponics, and
selected urban streets redesigned as growing fields, and community gardens.
|OFFICERS of the CENTER
WALKING DOWN HOPE STREET
SCIENCE DERAILED -- DATA BURIED, SAYS
FORMER SURGEON GENERAL
NO SAFE HARBORS
THE PLAYER by LEWIS MACADAMS
URBAN DEVELOPMENT - Ballona Wetlands
AL MEYERHOFF (IN MEMORIAM )
Our Champions - Our Killers
|G R E E N I N G T H E F O O D D E S E R T S
IN SUMMARY, WHEN FULLY OPERATIONAL, THE MODEL FARM-TO-TABLE FOOD PARK
will offer multi-service retail opportunities in a centralized setting with integrated and easily accessible
markets and shops -- featuring an urban farm, a supermarket, restaurant, community center, and a pre-
pared food facility, as well as steady jobs, nutrition education and public health programs. Scheduled
round-trip shuttle-bus services will provide transportation to and from adjacent neighborhoods. After-
school programs will offer varied activities in a safe and healthful in-door/outdoor setting.
Through a combination of career-oriented employment, and a secure food delivery system, combined
w ith numerous health-oriented programs, we believe Food Deserts will soon become the FOOD PARKS OF
THE FUTURE, revitalizing hundreds of under-served communities throughout the United States.
step approach with an effective visual platform and design presentation. We are developing a
presentation which includes an over-all cost benefit analysis and estimated funding goals.
TO SUPPORT AND CLARIFY THE OVERALL RATIONALE FOR THE PROJECT, our presentation will
also include a comprehensive outline of specific customer services and related public health
goals. Each service division will be visualized through architectural renderings and 3D table
models to demonstrate the community-oriented intention of the complex, and generate local
interest and participation.
|SHIPS, TRUCKS, and TRAINS
by ANDREA HRICKO
ENVIRONMENTALISTS PAY PRICE FOR
COMPROMISE, by SEEMA MEHTA
"MEANING" by CZESLAW MILOSZ
VISIONING HOPE, by PETER DOUGLAS
STRENGTHENING AIR QUALITY LAWS
by JESSE MARQUEZ
SAVING THE WETLANDS
Protecting Under-ground Miners
by Celeste Monforton
The Environmental Relief Center (a non-
profit private foundation dedicated to
environmental education, sustainability,
and public health) understands that
selected copyright materials may be
reprinted for educational purposes. If you
are a Copyright holder, under the Fair Use
Provision of United States Copyright Law,
and believe we have mistakenly
published your materials, please contact
us and we will immediately remove your
informative essays, articles, or data.
"Local Jobs Supporting Local Communities"
TO ASSURE JOB SECURITY AND EQUITABLE OPPORTUNITIES, an alternative economic structure for the
the enterprise and thereby share in executive decisions concerning Food Park investments and expan-
sion, distribution of profits, and rotational career-building opportunities.
FOR MANY YEARS, NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS, ALONG WITH FEDERAL, STATE, AND LOCAL AGENCIES,
have offered innovative programs to supplement the health and nutritional needs of "Food Desert"
communities. Significant local interventions have ranged from residential gardens, to the introduction
of fresh-food carts, mobile health clinics, nutritional guidance, electronic banking credits, food trucks,
and produce vending in corner stores. Certainly, there have been numerous personal and community
improvements as a result of these beneficial services, but lacking economic stability and long-term
employment, positive outcomes are difficult to assess and many evaluations remain incomplete.
|P R O J E C T D E S I G N A N D P R E S E N T A T I ON
|TRANSFORMING A "FOOD DESERT" INTO A FOOD OASIS
| B U I L D I N G A S U S T A I N A B L E, U R B A N
|F A R M - T O - T A B L E F O O D P A R K
|Ilustraton by: Art Curtis
|I N T R O D U C T I O N TO G R E E N I N G T H E F O O D D E S E R T S
|WHEN COMPLETED AND FULLY OPERATIONAL , THE FARM-TO-TABLE FOOD PARK WILL COMBINE URBAN
AGRICULTURE WITH A FULL-SERVICE SUPERMARKET, A PREPARED FOOD DIVISION, RESTAURANTS, AND A
COMMUNITY CENTER, PROVIDING A SUSTAINABLE MODEL FOR ECONOMIC RECOVERY IN FOOD-DESERT
THE FOOD PARK MODEL WILL ALSO SERVE AS A SHOW-CASE FOR RENEWABLE TECHNOLOGIES SUCH AS
SOLAR, WIND AND THERMAL POWER, AS WELL AS ZERO-WASTE MANAGEMENT, WATER RECYCLING AND
OTHER ENERGY- EFFICIENT INNOVATIONS.
|THROUGHOUT THE FARM AND FOOD- PARK COMPLEX, CONCERN FOR PHYSICAL SAFETY
will guide the architectural features and over-all design for buildings, public paths, and
elevated boardwalks, providing easy access to fresh produce and retail services, outdoor
activities, nutrition education, after-school programs, and family cooking classes in a safe
and secure community-park setting.