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Design and development of a highly productive, functional, and sustainable urban farm and youth education site.

Gardening the Community Urban Farm, Springfield, MA

Gardening the Community (GTC) is a food justice organization engaged in youth development, urban agriculture and sustainable living, in order to build healthy and equitable communities in an area of Springfield that is a USDA defined food desert. GTC’s programs include engaging youth in growing food, building sustainable, organic farms on formerly abandoned lots, increasing healthy food access through affordable neighborhood farm stands, and increasing access to farmers markets.

In July 2014 GTC purchased two adjacent vacant lots in Springfield, MA, and approached Regenerative Design Group to help them transform this site into a vibrant urban farm and training center. Once established, the garden will double their acreage and food production. This is the first community-controlled urban agriculture site in Springfield, and will serve as a demonstration project for others wanting to regenerate vacant, poor quality urban plots by creating productive green spaces.

Our team is working closely with the leaders and youth of GTC to incorporate regenerative agricultural practices into this inner-city location. Ongoing efforts include rigorous site and soil analyses, greenhouse design and construction oversight. Key featstormwater management and green infrastructure, and designing a functional, productive, and beautiful site for visitors and participants.

Key Features

  • Four-season greenhouse
  • Parking, office, farm stand, tool shed, and wash station
  • Annual and perennial production areas
  • Designated composting site
  • Universal access
  • Rain gardens and on-site stormwater management

Services Provided

  • Project goal setting and visioning
  • Site analyses
  • Schematic site plans
  • Construction details
  • Permitting support
  • Grant development support
  • Construction documents

We believe that we have the ability to solve our local hunger and food insecurity challenges through growing food, empowering our youth, dismantling institutional racism and creating opportunities to assure that healthy, nutritious, local, affordable food is available for all residents in our home city of Springfield, MA and beyond.

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