Sydney has finally jumped on the inner city farm bandwagon with the City of Sydney Council supporting the implementation of an operating City Farm in two distinct sites; the empty Powerhouse Museum car park in Ultimo and Sydney Park in St Peters.
Influenced by the community garden movement, the city farm model focuses on the idea of a cooperative aim to grow fresh fruit and vegetables, care for small farm animals and enjoy farmers’ markets with educational programs (in this case, in partnership with the Powerhouse Museum).
The first city farm was opened in Kentish Town, London, in 1972, and has since become a popular sustainable concept in the UK and other Australian capital cities; the Collingwood Children’s Farm was established in Melbourne in 1979. So it was an exciting step forward on November 7 when the Council supported spreading the farm across two busy Sydney sites.
The 44-hectare, City-owned Sydney Park is known for its historic brick kilns which were in operation from 1948 to 1976. Already an environmentally friendly site, it has a proposed water harvesting system that will capture 840 million litres of stormwater a year for reuse in the park and throughout the city.
The empty car park of the Powerhouse Museum is centrally located and close to Darling Harbour, Central Station and a number of universities such as UTS and Sydney University.
Already, the Sydney City Farm community group has over 1500 active and enthusiastic supporters, glad to finally have hands-on involvement in an urban farm and environmental education centre.