Patrick Arnell is Technical Director, Sustainable Urban Development in Calgary, Alberta.
Urban agriculture is not a fad. And for beginning farmers, it is the cheapest most accessible way to try out the business of farming and the 21st century challenges of creating a unique brand, product and market without a multi-million $ investment in land and machinery. Community gardens are at peak expansion in Calgary and Edmonton. Patrick Arnell makes the case that urban sustainability needs urban agriculture. Urban agriculture is 5% of the world's food production land base (not insignificant). Urban agriculture accounts for 10 and 13% of land-use in Edmonton and Calgary respectively. Urban agriculture is a fledgling policy area and technical aspects eg soil quality can be challenging.
Patrick Arnell's presentation was part of the 2016 AIA Conference, April 19-21, in Banff Alberta.