Urban Agriculture

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This is a good start in my opinion. Can you provide a Stakeholder’s Analysis? I know this is difficult because you don’t really have a client, but you might challenge yourself to look in this direction. I look forward to seeing how this comes together. At present, I’d assign a “B”, but I think you should easily get the webpage into shape for an “A”. Please let me know if you have any questions.
(Video was good, but I would have liked to see people in it and hear voices)

Welcome to our webpage! Our names are Sarah, Ari, Gracie, and Nick.
(Ari’s Picture didn’t come through)

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What is Urban Agriculture?

Urban Agriculture involves growing and cultivating food within more public areas and cityscapes. Examples of this way of living can include vertical farming, rooftop farming, aquaponics facilities, home composting, community gardens, and food hubs. The benefits of urban agriculture are numerous, including improved air quality, promotion of healthy diets, creating job opportunities, educating youth, etc. Additionally, this can be used within landscaping to be aesthetically pleasing and healthier for the community. Funding is usually backed by grants and donations, and volunteerism helps to establish and run these agricultural facilities.

Our Problem Statement

In America, many of us are fortunate enough to be within a reasonably close range to fresh produce. For those of us who must travel a little ways, we are still likely to have access to our own vehicles or public transportation. However, for millions of Americans–many of which are low-income families, these healthy options are not readily available in their respective neighborhoods (Figure 1). When healthy food is a feasible option, the rate of obesity is significantly lower, and overall quality of life is generally improved. Therefore, establishing urban agriculture in urban slums could prove highly beneficial to these low-income neighborhoods by providing the means with which to gain access to fresh produce.

Worldwide, hunger continues to be of utmost concern. According to the World Food Programme, nearly 800 million people do not have enough food to live an active, healthy lifestyle. The vast majority of the world’s hungry people live in developing nations with low income per person, where nearly 13% of the population can be considered underfed and malnourished (Figure 2). One out of 6 children is underweight, and poor nutrition accounts for almost 45% of deaths in children under five. These issues of hunger are considerable in Latin America and most notably in Asia, which houses the majority of hungry people worldwide. Urban agriculture could be tailored to suit these vastly differing areas, adapting to the specific needs of each community in order to increase food accessibility and growing knowledge.

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Figure 1. Food supply as a function of income per person. As the average income of an individual increases, food supply increases as well.
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Figure 2. Malnutrition as a function of income per person. As the average income of an individual decreases, the likelihood of malnourishment increases.

(is this Figure 1? You can put a caption below it describing what you are presenting)
Our goal is to propose a plan for implementing various types of urban agriculture in four separate cities: San Luis Obispo, CA; Detroit, MI; Tegucigalpa, Honduras; and Hyderabad, India. This will be accomplished by investigating the specific needs of each city and evaluating demographic data to determine which urban agricultural technique(s) would be best suited for each area. We hope to respect these cultures while promoting a healthier standard of living. Additionally, we are hoping to possibly get in contact with other established urban agriculture programs and city leaders to give us insight for our proposal. Overall, in the very least, we are optimistic that this project will be educational to ourselves and to others.

Where would this be useful?

San Luis Obispo, CA

San Luis Obispo, CA consists of nearly $47,000
(do you mean 47,000 people?)
with an estimated mean family income of around $44,000. Homelessness, however, still continues to be an issue, as the cost of housing continues to be one of the steepest in America. Many of the homeless struggle to find food, let alone healthy food options. Furthermore, San Luis Obispo is the home to our university, Cal Poly, which displays an overall promotion of healthy living. Many members of our university are almost always seen in the gym or being active around campus. Health and fitness are a common passion; therefore, urban agriculture could be implementing in various ways around the university.

PLAN: The establishment of a community food hub for local displaced individuals would be highly beneficial to their well-being. This center could be built in spaces that are not currently being utilized, or perhaps in or near the homeless shelter in SLO. After a few years of tending to immature plants, when these plants become mature, they could be distributed to other homeless areas throughout the county. The garden could serve as a potential job source for these homeless individuals as well as serve as a social sphere for alike individuals. At Cal Poly, the Student Experimental Farm could be expanded upon to incorporate a larger variety of local produce. Vertical farming, rooftop farming, aquaponics, and other urban agricultural practices could be examined in a university setting to implement in elementary schools, neighborhoods, and other unoccupied areas.
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Detroit, MI

Around 700,000 people inhabit the city of Detroit, which consists of many urban slums for low-income American families. These slums are usually not within close proximities to grocery stores or local produce vendors, which contributes to the poor nourishment of these adults and children. Luckily, multiple urban agriculture programs are already being established with the help of federal grants and community involvement. Investigating the success of these programs in addition to other potential urban agriculture practices will prove to be integral in formulating our proposal when considering the other cities we are investigating.

PLAN: Many buildings located in concentrated, low-income communities in Detroit are apartment complexes or shared community buildings. Due to the highly concentrated population in these areas, there is not a whole lot of space available for developments that are not housing. Therefore, private rooftop farming could be useful in these areas. Nutrient and antioxidant rich plants (berries, kale, etc.) could be cultivated in these designated spaces, along with plants that efficiently reduce the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere (palms, philodendron, ferns, etc.) These areas would increase the availability of healthy foods to areas that do not have a fairly nearby grocery store and decrease atmospheric toxins in the area, overall promoting a more healthy and environmentally conscious way of living. Additionally, if and when space could be found, community gardens could be established as well. These gardens could be supervised by individuals who are trained in the proper care of food and plant cultivation who could then educate those who wish to participate in and benefit from the gardens. Due to the fact than many individuals in these concentrated areas are not within close proximity to a grocery store, these gardens could serve as an alternative.
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Tegucigalpa, Honduras
The population of Tegucigalpa is around 1.1 million people, with more than 50% of the population living below the poverty line. There is a high potential for engagement with women in agricultural issues, which could be helpful during our investigation. As of now, the drought and water rationing is proving to be a serious issue. Combatting this issue is the “Mother Earth Movement,” an organization of women that help construct rainwater collection units. Vertical gardens could be useful in collection of rainwater; however, more research is needed to determine which urban agricultural practices will prove to be the most necessary for this location.

Housing in the poor community Living conditions for those below the poverty line

Hyderabad, India
Nearly 7 million people reside in urban slums and 13.4% of the population live below the poverty line. Rural to urban migration puts heavy stress on food supplies. As a result, urban agriculture starting to be implemented in outskirts of the city. However, many structures in the slums of Hyderabad are so unstable that rooftop agriculture is proving to be nearly impossible, which is a major issue for urban agriculture implementation. The pollution of soil and water also continues to be an area of concern, which is being combatted with rainwater harvesting. With these issues in mind, we are in the process of deciding an appropriate form of urban agriculture to help reduce these issues and decrease the stress on the food supply.

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An areal picture of the population density Rooftop framework in urban slums

Stakeholder’s Analysis

If we were to pursue establishing urban agriculture in the cities discussed, we would likely choose the city of Detroit. Therefore, this is what would be proposed as a stakeholder’s analysis for that area.

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Figure 3. Stakeholder analysis for implementation of urban agriculture in the city of Detroit.

Challenges and Limitation

Urban agriculture requires enough resources to efficiently grow enough food to be effective. Some challenges for areas in developing countries could be soil degradation and contamination with waste and chemicals, contaminated water, and a lack of space to implement urban farms. Another major challenge especially for developing countries is a lack of organizers to implement urban agriculture. Cities like Detroit have many different organizations and working groups dedicated to education and setting up urban agriculture, those resources might not be available in developing nations. Another challenge is making sure that the practices are sustainable and the resources needed are readily available for the people. Some other limitations could be issues with climate and environmental differences. Urban heat islands could make growing certain crops more difficult.

(What is your plan and/or outlook? where should this project go? Do you have a preferred technology? In the video you said that there was talk with SLO. Is anything happening with that?