Sustainability pioneers Method Products, PBC and Gotham Greens, leaders in their respective industries—eco-friendly cleaning products and urban farming—have announced a groundbreaking partnership to build the world’s largest rooftop farm at Method’s new manufacturing plant in the Pullman neighbourhood of Chicago’s south side. Designed by William McDonough + Partners, Method’s plant is anticipated to be the world’s first LEED-Platinum certified manufacturing plant in its industry. Gotham Greens will design, build and operate a state-of-the-art agricultural greenhouse facility on the roof of the plant. The greenhouse will produce up to 1 million pounds of fresh, sustainably grown, pesticide-free produce annually. The produce will be distributed through local Chicago retailers, restaurants, farmer’s markets and community groups.
“Chicago has shown remarkable leadership in urban farming and green building over the past decade,” said Viraj Puri, Co-founder and CEO of Gotham Greens, “and we’re thrilled to be contributing to the trailblazing work being done in these sectors and furthering Chicago’s position as one of the greenest and most innovative cities in America. We’re particularly honoured to be partnering with Method and the Pullman Park development and community. We are dedicated to providing our customers and local residents with the freshest and best tasting, hyper-local produce available, 365 days of the year.”
“Method has been instrumental in supporting the revitalization happening in Pullman, and the addition of this sustainable greenhouse means that more Chicago residents will have access to fresh, healthy foods grown in the neighbourhood,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “I commend both Method and Gotham Greens on their commitment to Pullman and look forward to seeing the results of this partnership come to fruition.”
“Gotham Greens shares our goal of using business as a force for social and environmental good,” said Drew Fraser, CEO of Method. “We are thrilled to partner with a like-minded organization, who has demonstrated that the innovative, adaptive use of urban space can make a significant impact on local communities.”
“Little could be more gratifying to those of us at CNI than Method’s partnership with Gotham Greens – as it affirms our vision of what Pullman Park could and should be,” said David Doig, President of Chicago Neighbourhood Initiatives. “The area’s unparalleled rail, road, water and air infrastructure, the availability of land, and its strong workforce render Pullman a natural home for this exciting generation of green industries.”
"Gotham Greens is a perfect complement, not only to Method, but to our 9th Ward – providing great food and great jobs – both of which are essential to nourishing our community," said Alderman Anthony A. Beale of the 9th Ward.
When compared to conventional agriculture, Gotham Greens’ irrigation methods use 20 times less land and 10 times less water and eliminate the need for pesticide use and fertilizer runoff, which is one of the leading causes of global water pollution. The company’s sterile greenhouses and comprehensive food safety program minimize the risk of foodborne pathogens including E. coli and salmonella. By growing locally in Pullman, Gotham Greens will eliminate the carbon footprint linked to shipping produce across the country. For the consumer, this means finding the freshest and most nutritious produce imaginable, year-round. Often, the Gotham Greens produce Chicago residents will find in stores or at their local farmer’s markets will have been harvested and packaged that very same day, even in the middle of winter. The facility is scheduled to be operational in the spring of 2015.
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