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The Science Barge

(originally published 8/3/2010)

All photos and text ©Peter Bennett - All Rights Reserved

A few weeks ago I talked about the idea of converting urban rooftops into urban farms. The benefits go beyond just having more locally grown food, a reduction in transportation costs and mitigating the effect, it helps people understand how food is grown, something too many of us have lost in a world of packaged foods, fast foods and ready to eat everything. But learning to grow a garden, let alone an urban farm can be a big jump for people. There is the issue of working in small, sometimes confined spaces, and how do you set up irrigation systems and get the energy to run them. These are challenges that got some people thinking a few years ago at an organization called New York Sun Works, and so they set out to create some prototypes for urban gardening that would help them and others understand how to create agricultural systems that work in an urban environment. They created the Science Barge.

The Science Barge was launched in May, 2007 and over the course of the next year or so, visited several spots along the Westside of Manhattan on the Hudson River. It is now run by Groundwork Hudson Valley and has found a permanent home in Yonkers. Visitors and schoolchildren are welcome to visit and learn about urban farming and sustainability, enabling them to possibly create a vision for urban living that so far had been reserved for their rural neighbors, namely growing their own food...

For complete story contact me at pbennett(at)

All photos and text ©Peter Bennett - All Rights Reserved