Bayou District Foundation
Clean Plate Projects, LLC
The New Orleans Food and Farm Networ
Situated within the Columbia Parc development, the Green is conceived as the central common for residents within and abutting the area. The space, which covers a full city block, is split into two major functions: activity field and food production. The activity field is planned as a multipurpose space, scaled for structured sports and large gatherings. The food production side allows for multiple growing areas, spaces for associated agricultural elements, and a central pavilion structure. The Green focuses a concerted effort towards sustainable practices as a model for future work on-site and within the adjoining neighborhoods.
Most importantly, the Green is intended to provide multiple avenues for engaging residents of all ages in activities that improve their health and quality of life. Ideally situated next to the early childhood learning center, across from the senior housing complex, and in the center of the larger housing development, The Green is designed as a gathering place where residents have a chance to visit, learn together, and share cooking and gardening knowledge. The Green is also conceived as a nexus for food education citywide, drawing individuals and organizations from far and wide to share in the hands-on education and food production on site.
Initial development of the Green involves the construction of the activity field and site water catchment system. In a second phase to follow, a portion of the production area will be developed for a small growing area along with a formal space for community-building activities. This will provide garden space for children in nearby schools to learn and residents to maintain and harvest from. Paired with this infrastructure development will be the coordination of educational events that provide garden participants with foundational knowledge to enable them to grow food for their own consumption. Larger tracts of land will be dedicated to short-term agricultural use, potentially providing market gardeners or other sustainable gardening ventures space where they can temporarily operate.
Even further development involves transforming the remaining area of the production side into garden space with a combination of raised beds and in-ground planting areas. Other associated elements may also be introduced, such as chicken coops, bee boxes, composting areas, recycling center, and aviary structures. Additionally, a central pavilion will provide a covered area for gathering, cooking demonstrations, food markets and stage space for large events. This structure also includes storage areas, a greenhouse space, bathrooms, and cold storage.
Throughout its development, The Green is intended to act as an incubator and facilitator for distributing operational ideas throughout Columbia Parc. Prior to their development, adjacent blocks will support phytoremediation efforts and provide supplemental space for temporary growing operations unable to fit within the Green. Later, as the gardening program becomes established, residents will have opportunities to begin their own small-scale production plots and recycling/composting centers on lawns within their housing blocks.