Modular Urban Greenhouse Protects Plants from Air Pollution

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In theory, urban farming is a great way to help cities become more self-sustaining, producing some quantity of their own food locally. But what role does significant air pollution play in the health of food-producing plants grown within city limits? It’s unclear whether eating foods grown in a city environment could be harmful, but designer Antonio Scarponi has come up with a solution that’ll make sure fruits, vegetables and herbs are thriving in clean, filtered air.

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Developed for Veg and the City, ‘Harvesting Station’ is a modular plexiglas-and-wood urban greenhouse unit that takes up very little space, yet is capable of growing up to 200 plants. The structure protects food-producing plants from animals and toxic gases, and makes interstitial spaces in the city like bus stops, rooftops and vacant lots more productive.


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The greenhouse is topped with a 500-liter water tank, which collects water and uses a micro dripping system to keep the plants properly hydrated. A floating flag indicates how much liquid has been collected. Each individual unit sits on top of a pallet base, and multiple units can be put together for a larger greenhouse structure.

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Scarponi envisions these portable, compact farms being placed on playgrounds where they can be used to educate students about growing food, or even functioning as multipurpose shelters at bus stops.


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