Urban rooftop farming: retrofitting a supermarket's rooftop with focus on food production

Examensarbete för masterexamen
Nanaa, Najoud
Climate change, urbanization, and a scarcity of resources are just a few factors that indicate a major structural change in our urban design. This has raised the question about the future of food production, where we rely on global imports and rural resources. Sweden’s overall supply of imported fresh fruit and vegetables is significantly high, accounting for more than 70%. Most imported products consist of products not produced in Sweden, products only produced during seasonal or not available in adequate quantities in Sweden (FAO, n.d.). Imported greens are accompanied by several undesirable side effects, like excess packaging, transportation, cooling, and warehousing. Urban rooftop farming could become a viable alternative to imported vegetables and fruits in Sweden in order to deliver more resilient, sustainable, and safe food production. The vegetables and fruits can be grown directly where they are sold, at the supermarket! That said, supermarkets can become some sort of flag for the democratization of urban rooftop farming, in a sense that we are not talking about hyper-stores or an exclusive place for rich people; it is for everyone! These roof typologies can become a catalyst for urban farming that improves local food production and makes it more efficient to afford healthy and sustainable food for all people. This is accompanied as well as by several social and environmental benefits. The thesis focuses on the spatial qualities and programming of a specific supermarket´s roof in the most beneficial ways. The project investigates how to optimize the added roof topology by focusing on technical solutions and design principles. The roof farming focuses on aeroponic system, a farming type of vertical farming, to make the food production more sustainable, with a high yield per sq m, and diverse. This project showcase what great potential a retrofitted green rooftop can have and how we need to plan and build with sustainability as a driving force. The thesis is carried out as research by design project. Investigating the opportunities of adding a rooftop farm on a supermarket. The research consists of literature studies, references, site visits, and digital model analysis in order to create a relationship between the analysis and proposal.
urban farming, food production, vertical farming, aeroponic system, indoor farming, unused rooftop, and greenhouse
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