Verdant, an autonomous urban farm that moves while growing food

Gianluca Riccio


mobile urban farm

An urban farm that moves by itself to deliver fruit and vegetables while growing them, in a continuous cycle and at "always zero" kilometers.

verdant is the project with which the Korean designer Kyungtaek Lim presented his thesis. It struck me because I think it's a good idea, and I think it can inspire a future vision of smart agriculture in urban contexts. 

What is proposed with Verdant is a new form of urban farm that eliminates long distribution channels between producers and consumers, making them more efficient and reducing fuel consumption in the long term. I recently spoke about studies on aquaponics combined with logistics (containers that become mini aquaponics farms): this solution also tries to reconcile the two.

In the reconstruction, in the foreground is a neighborhood "hub", with the various "circular fields" that cultivate and, if necessary, become vehicles.

Agriculture on the move

Il climate it is what it is, as you know. We face increased crop losses due to floods or extreme weather events. Given the context, Lim developed his farming concept that combines with mobility. The result is verdant, an urban micro farm system equipped with its own autonomous mobility. On the other hand, the future of autonomous vehicles will present us with entire “rooms on wheels” that will take away the responsibility of driving from us. We will be able to move while we work or let's pass the time. What stops an autonomous vehicle from also becoming the hub of a new "food supply chain" that grows food while it is delivering it?

Traveling urban farm (and food chain)

From various “central stations” located at strategic points in the city, or in each neighborhood, each urban farm travels to deliver.

Verdant Urban Micro Farming provides the city with its own mobile food chain. If you think about it, there is a long way to go for even just a simple plate of salad to reach our table. The cultivation process and distribution of crops require long kilometers and cause large carbon emissions.

Verdant Farming puts a vertical farm on wheels and makes it move. It offers modular urban farming where people can easily get their own modular farming system. The "mobile" garden can connect to a central hub, take what is needed and then distribute fruit and vegetables to the places where it is called to deliver.

urban farm
Once at its destination, the autonomous urban farm supplies fruit and vegetables to individual commercial realities (restaurants, pubs) or to fruit and vegetable retailers.

An autonomous urban farm is a frontier project, there is no doubt. Yet Verdant shows how the future (to use William Gibson's words) is already here: we just have to learn to distribute it well.

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