author:Jilles van Eibergen Santhagens
After a talk with some locals while visiting the RDM site some discoveries were made. One of them was the lack of a good store where you can buy your food. You have to travel a great distance from the RDM area before you are in a neighborhood where you can buy your goods. This, in combination with the decrease of agricultural land by expanding cities in The Netherlands, brought me to an urban vertical farming project: Foodcenterdm. What this foodcentre will do is bring fresh, healthy and affordable food directly to the customers at the RDM area, right in the middle of the city of Rotterdam.
But you can't build the ordinary greenhouse right in the middle of a city. An urban context needs an urban solution. The many greenhouses you find in The Netherlands are build with mass standardization, from steel and glass. Huge ugly rectangular mass production. This urban farm however, has been formed by it's surrounding, with the quay at the south east corner of the dock as it's leading object. The building is nicely integrated in it's urban context with it's wing shaped form following the corner of the quay, connecting two different areas of the RDM site.
It's a place where vegetables are grown hydroponically in vertical farming towers and where fish are bred in fish tanks. So it's main purpose is the production of food. But it is also a place where people can learn where their food is coming from. They can have a nice lunch or dinner at the Fishes&Veggies restaurant directly next to the place where the products are grown.
The location of the project is ideal for a short walk along the water side. People having a break from work or the students from the RDM campus can buy their fish and vegetables at the floating market stalls for their dinner that evening. The stalls can moor at the bend of the pier where they can form a small market place. They can sell the goods right on the spot or distribute them to other areas of the RDM wharf.
Travelling Floating Market | Jonathan Davidson
Member of the landscaping committee