Indiana News

Urban Farm Project Moves Ahead in Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS (WOWO): The City of Indianapolis is taking a giant step on the urban farming front.

Mayor Greg Ballard and Sustainable Local Foods Indiana Managing Member Jim Bloom announced SLFI's $1.2 million acquisition of an old, vacant warehouse on the city's near eastside. Bloom says the 61,000 square-foot building will become their first Indiana urban farm.

Bloom says they believe old buildings like the one they've acquired should be re-used when possible to grow local food year round. Bloom says the facility will help revive the local community on S. Rural Street. He says most of the building will be used to grow food like lettuce, collard greens, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers and strawberries.

The rest of the building will be used for community educational purposes. Bloom says they already have contracts with Kroger, Meijer and Whole Foods, but they're also targeting schools and hospitals. He says their core mission is to create long term, sustainable employment.

No word on the number of jobs the current project will create. Bloom says they plan to create seven other similar sites across the city in three years. He says they'll have the S. Rural site up in a couple of months and continue to adapt it.

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