Chris Hildreth (left) and Alley Dewji at Dockside Green last week.

Dockside Green the new home for urban agriculture

Chris Hildreth anticipates that the first crop from his urban farm will be delivered to restaurants on April 22, which is also Earth Day.

Last year, Chris Hildreth graduated from the University of Victoria and hit the ground running with a dream of bringing a unique, sustainable concept to Victoria’s local food economy.

He used money that he’d won in business competitions at UVic to mount a pilot project on the rooftop of 1001 Blanshard St. where he grew produce in 400 environmentally friendly planters — produce that was used by Fiamo Italian Kitchen.

The project was an overwhelming success.

“We produced about 10 times more food than we’d anticipated,” said Hildreth. “At the end of the season we knew that we had a winner on our hands and this year’s expansion was made possible.”

With his Blanshard Street location now unavailable because of construction, Hildreth sought out a new, expanded location and found the perfect partner at Dockside Green.

Dockside Green is contributing 9,000 square feet of vacant land to the project. It’s part of their BETA Project — an initiative to establish a portion of Dockside Green as a testing ground for small, local businesses as well as arts and cultural initiatives. The much larger site will be home for 2,400 of the smart pots — containers full of composted soil in which a variety of vegetables will be planted for use by local restaurants. When harvested, the material will be washed and placed in reusable containers, which will then be moved by bicycles to the participating restaurants.

“It’s a zero carbon footprint operation,” said Hildreth. “And when you have a salad at one of the participating restaurants you’ll know that the food you’re eating is fresh…picked a few blocks away in the last 24 hours. Compare that with the large majority of food that we currently consume that travels large distances through very complex distribution systems. This is really a better alternative…the way of the future.”

The participating restaurants for this year’s crop are Canoe Brewpub, Spinnakers Gastro Brew Pub, and Fiamos Italian Kitchen.

Hildreth anticipates that the first crop from his urban farm will be delivered to restaurants on April 22, which is also Earth Day.

 

 

Just Posted

Hundreds rally in support of horse carriages outside Victoria City Hall

Crowd angry with Coun. Ben Isitt’s motion to ban local horse carriage industry

Rifflandia Festival cancelled for 2019

Early Bird tickets can be refunded at point of purchase, or held and redeemed for 2020

Five-month bridge closure poses early impacts on drivers during rush hour

Construction began Tuesday on the crossing commonly known as the Bay Street bridge

New virgin queen headlines ‘Bee Day’ at Saanich sanctuary

Taste bee spit and check out the hive at Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary this Sunday

Mom who lost son to brain tumour in March joins the 24th annual Brain Tumour Walk

The Brain Tumour Walk takes place at the University of Victoria on Sunday, May 26

VIDEO: Canadian, U.S. Coast guards run oil spill response drills

20 vessels were on the water to practice international response methods

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of May 21

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Were you satisfied with the Game of Thrones series finale?

Millions gathered in front of their televisions Sunday night to watch the… Continue reading

Raptors beat Bucks 105-99 to move within 1 game of NBA Finals

Leonard scores 35 as Toronto takes 3-2 series lead over Milwaukee

B.C. Supreme Court dismisses review around ferry workers’ right to strike

B.C. Ferry and Marine Workers’ Union collective agreement expires November 2020

Young Victoria distillery earns prestigious Scotch awards

Scottish influences range from techniques to ‘kilted tours’ at award-winning business

Municipalities protest after B.C. declares marijuana crops ‘farm use’

UBCM president seeks answers in letter to John Horgan government

CMHC defends mortgage stress test changes amid calls for loosening rules

Uninsured borrowers must now show they could service their mortgage if rates rose two per cent

Brewpub offers ‘boat valet’ for paddlers during Surfrider celebration tonight

Free ‘Surf Formal’ evening features a local art auction, door prizes, live music

Most Read