CNGF is helping to develop the Santa Clara Agrihood project, both in design and technical expertise, by creating a regenerative farm model and building community partnerships. This is a model we can use with other developers and community partners.
Most recently, CNGF has developed a partnership with The CORE Companies, a corporation that specializes in low-income senior housing. As a non-profit community development partner and sustainable land-use consultant, we are developing the first medium-dense, low income, affordable and market rate urban village with a working farm, community gardens and native landscaping in the country. This $200,000,000 urban Agrihood is known as Sustainable Santa Clara (SSC).
CNGF aims to create a new model of urban living that incorporates affordable, medium-density housing within a self-sustaining environment that includes a working farm and offers numerous programs for wellness education. This is a truly innovative project, unlike any other in the United States. The Agrihood will include a working farm, native landscaping, and innovative methods of water conservation and waste management. It incorporates practices that will sequester more carbon, produce abundant food, clean the air, and promote biodiversity, all while being adjacent to six stories of urban apartment buildings. Nearly, twenty percent of the 6-acre parcel will be devoted to native gardens, food gardens, walking trails, and a working no-till farm.
By utilizing renewable energy, community gardens, native landscaping, and a design that integrates nearby attractions, such as Valley Fair and Santana Row, Agrihood has the potential to become a beacon of sustainability in an area of limited environmental innovations.
This Agrihood theme of development is capable of meeting the needs of Silicon Valley’s housing crisis. SSC is a sustainable land-use space for the benefit of elders and the general community. It is an urban regenerative farm-based housing community and public open space. This project will honor the history of this site as a UC agricultural research station since 1920, by locating the Sustainable Urban Land Use Research Institute(SULRI).
Agrihood’s working farm is our Regenerative Farming Model, as well as the site for our Sustainable Urban Land-use Research Institute (SULRI) and the teaching facilities for our Sustainable Organic Farm Training (SOFT) program. SULRI, will be a collaboration of four leading universities in the area. This institute will primarily investigate the sustainable urban land-use models impact on soil, air, water, food, waste, native plants, alternative energy, alternative transportation, human health and well-being, and environmental education. College Interns will monitor, record and collect data to verify the effectiveness of the Best Management Practices (BMPs) and Low Impact Developments (LIDs) that will be implemented there. The establishment of SOFT program serves as a platform for us to develop a regenerative agricultural network in Santa Clara County, California. This program aims to create science-based urban regenerative farming solutions that can be studied and monitored. A place where best practices can be taught so that future urban farmers can be trained to replicate local regional models. Once trained, farm leaders can return to their own communities and create other urban regenerative farming networks in regional population centers that can continue to be studied and improved.
The Concept of Agrihood is a program based on creating biodiversity and growing food locally & sustainably using regenerative farming techniques and educating/training youth & community. Its key components include the following:
- Farm: Regenerative farm, Aquaponics, vertical food towers, bee keeping, chickens, rabbits.
- Interactive teaching farms/Gardens
- Orchards and pet walk
- Nursery, Greenhouse
- Native meadow and woodland gardens
- Farmers market
- Farm to table cooking and dining events
- Pop up kitchen and vendor carts
- Bocce ball court
- Community gardensCommunity barn
- Amphitheatre, public gathering area/plaza
- Vineyard with outdoor dining
- Active play area with habitat gardens and water features
- Hiking trails
- International food gardens (30 cuisines)
- Hand crafted art work throughout the village