Carrot City Designing for Urban Agriculture

Vertical Farms

Exhibit Category / Catégorie de l'expo: City

Location/Emplacement: Chicago, IL, USA and Dubai, DAE
Dates: n/a
Designers/Concepteurs: Jessi Lyons, Shirah Cahil, Pete Stam, Elana Tenenbaum
Clients: Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago

More Information/Plus d'informations:
Image Credits/Crédits d'images: Eric Ellingsen

Project Description: (version française ci-dessous)


  • Year-round crop production: 1 indoor acre is equivalent to 4-6 outdoor acres or more, depending upon the crop.
  • Vertical Farm holds the promise of no crop failures due to droughts, floods, pests, or other periodic natural phenomena.
  • All Vertical Farm food will be grown organically employing chemically defined diets specific to each plant and animal species: no herbicides, pesticides, or fertilizers.
  • Vertical Farm eliminates agricultural runoff.
  • Vertical Farm allows farmland to be returned to the natural landscape, thus restoring ecosystem functions (e.g. increased biodiversity) and services (e.g. air purification).
  • Vertical Farm greatly reduces the incidence of many infectious diseases that are acquired at the agricultural interface.
  • Vertical Farm converts black and gray water into potable water by engineering the collection of the water realized through evapo-transpiration.
  • Vertical Farm adds energy back to the grid via methane generation from composting non-edible parts of plants and animals.
  • Vertical Farm dramatically reduces fossil fuel use (no tractors, shipping).
  • Vertical Farm eliminates much of the need for storage and preservation, thus reducing dramatically the population of vermin.
  • Vertical Farm converts abandoned urban properties into food centers.
  • Vertical Farm creates sustainable environments for urban centers.
  • Vertical Farm can provide production of medically valuable plants.
  • Vertical Farm creates new employment and educational opportunities.

FROM DUBAI TO CHICAGO Vertical Farm aims to integrate nature with a more dynamic urban-systems perspective informing one another in robust and deep ways around the performance criteria of our city and lives. The project aims to choreograph the diverse systems of food visibility, waste management, and urban sustainability, using available technologies, into a supra-structural, supra-functional part of the urban system itself. Vertical Farm offers stable change, and eco-urban stability, while embracing the dynamic complexity of our cities as urban-organisms, and recognising that it is our lives, actions and activities that ARE the city.

The Vertical Farm is a complex system, rather than a single building, providing a manifold of eco-services to our cities. It is not merely a skyscraper building where you grow tomatoes and shortened corn on farm plots chopped up like strips of turf and rolled into FAR [foot to area ratio] rationed floor-plates. Indeed, Vertical Farm is not merely about food, but about synchronizing the unseen circuits of energy, materials, labour and resources, capital and infrastructure, technology and politics upon which our cities depend. Vertical Farm allows us to dynamically thrive in the local place where we live, while linking in to global flows to embrace modernity and simultaneously return to our roots. Those roots simply exist 1000 feet above the ground. Our cities are starving for better answers to a 21st century urbanism; the Vertical Farm is one solution that needs to be on the menu.

The Vertical Farm helps regulate the flows of urban energy in the forms of water and waste management, redirecting those problematic outputs as energy inputs and agents of change for the production of our daily caloric needs.

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Description du Projet:

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Scale (Carrot City Category)


Location: City

Location: Country