Farm on Ogden

Type: Cultural
Location: Chicago, IL
Year: 2018


Farm on Ogden

Located in the North Lawndale neighborhood of Chicago, the Farm on Ogden is a joint project of the Chicago Botanic Garden’s Windy City Harvest and Lawndale Christian Health Center. Together, these groups looked to develop facilities that would serve a struggling community. The renovation of a bowstring truss building respects the neighborhood’s history while providing space for an indoor market, classrooms, commercial and teaching kitchens, and office space. Inside the market building, glass doors open to the new greenhouses. These greenhouses feature aquaponics and hydroponics systems, allowing seasonal vegetables and tilapia to be grown year-round, expanding upon the programming of the existing youth garden. Out front, a new parking plaza creates an exterior public gather space for employees and farmers markets.

Each component of the Farm on Ogden was designed to cultivate the community using food. In addition to providing much-needed access to fresh produce, the new facilities allow Windy City Harvest to train for year-round jobs in the agriculture and food industries. Classes are offered to teach local residents about food preparation and healthy eating habits, while the VeggieRX program delivers medically-necessary nutrition.

The Farm on Ogden is a central part of Lawndale Christian Health Center’s plan to revitalize and develop the surrounding neighborhood. The screen wall along Ogden Avenue serves as a billboard for the facilities, with large signage intertwined with sustainable hops. The function of the Farm is highly visible from the street due to the glass greenhouses and windows that span the front of the market building. A formerly derelict space has been transformed into an active, beautiful place.

Awards: 2019 AIA Distinguished Building Award Special Recognition

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