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Urban Agriculture Hub Emerging in Southwest Rockford!

It’s emerging! A youth-led urban agriculture hub in Southwest Rockford, IL. A hoop house, built by over 30 Rockford youth, is up and is being prepped for its first season of production.

The 2011 plans for cultivation and growth of over 6 urban agriculture sites are being developed by 3 contributing organizations. These plans even include youth owned micro-enterprises; Rockford truly has amazing youth with great ideas!

This reclamation & urban agriculture workshop is located in the same building as our Urban Initiative: Roots & Wings office in Rockford.  As I am typing now, I can hear the YouthBuild students building cold frames & raised bed frames. These urban agriculture products are all made of reclaimed wood from the historic Pump-handle Inn. The wood is from timbers 100 years old. The idea to make cold frames stemmed from the need of garden projects to extend their growing season. A bid has been pitched to the City of Rockford to supply their garden projects with cold frames. Students are also making bed frames, doghouses, birdhouses, and other products all out of recycled wood.

In 2009, The Learning Center & Comprehensive Community Solutions, Inc. (CCS) began a partnership with the vision to build and strengthen youth-led agriculture in Rockford.  The Learning Center trained over 50 young adults from CCS and other organizations to plant and maintain 5 community gardens in 2010. The success of the 2010 projects have led to an inspiring expansion of urban agriculture  & green reclamation projects in 2011.

This hub of youth-led urban agriculture is located at 907 S. Main St. in Rockford. The in ground grow sites are located a half a block west of the CCS campus. We invite you all to put a trip to our campus on your spring to do list.