In partnership with the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation, the Design Trust launched Five Borough Farm: Phase II in September 2012 to implement key policy and metrics recommendations developed in Phase I. This second phase of work will build the capacity, capital and political will required to strengthen and expand urban agriculture in New York City.
Five Borough Farm: Phase II has three interrelated goals:
1. Build a coalition of urban agriculture stakeholders to coordinate activity and inform citywide policy.
Promote innovative land-use solutions to support urban agricultural activity citywide.
3. Measure the impacts of urban agriculture in New York City.
For Phase II, the Design Trust has enlisted a new team of project fellows (including an urban planner, urban designer, environmental policy expert, and a filmmaker) to do the following:
• Connect the urban agriculture community with Parks and other City officials and policymakers through an Urban Agriculture Task Force (UATF), community-based workshops, and a video series to discuss decision-making processes affecting key issues, including land availability, access to quality soil and compost, funding, and economic development opportunities [Watch the new video about land availability, soil and compost!]
• Assess the suitability of city-owned land (vacant sites and existing parkland) for urban agriculture, and make land available for new farms and gardens through a pilot application with the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation.
•Develop user-friendly tools for farmers and gardeners in NYC that will help them collect and use data to quantitatively demostrate their outcomes and output. These tools will provide farmers and gardeners with the means to build capacity and communicate the value of their urban agriculture efforts to the City [Watch the new video about how data can be meaningful to farmers & gardeners].