Chicago Launches New Urban Farming Initiative

Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel recently announced a municipal urban farming plan that would put five acres of city owned vacant lots into the hands of local farmers and non-profits.
Urban farming, long an important part of American agricultural production, has recently taken off in cities across the country. Over the last several decades, urban farming was typically a family affair, with urban residents maintaining private gardens. Large-scale governmental planning tended to be done only in times of emergencies (such as the rise of Victory Gardens in World War Two).
With the economy still struggling and with jobs scarce, however, urban farming is offering many cities a chance to make use of vacant lots while simultaneously creating new jobs and revitalizing local economies.
In Chicago, Mayor Emanuel’s plan would take up to five acres of abandoned land and would make it available to local farmers and non-profit organizations.
According to city officials, the farms would not only give Chicago’s South Side a much needed financial boost, but would also help train local residents and potentially encourage job growth in the farm industry.
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer