Rooftop farming in Romainville

The project is born out of the reclamation of a 60s social housing project and plans to integrate a rooftop greenhouse system that will support urban rooftop farming. The mixed use building allows communities to reduce the distance between food production and food consumption. Produce is grown by professional farmers and is sold to local residents through markets, basket schemes or the organization AMAP. The greenhouses, which are a new design by Courtirey, have two levels. A steel structure supports elevated pots of soil and plants, which saves water and eliminates contact with polluted soil. Each pot has a a top layer of compost and lower layer of argyle drain system to optimize nutrients and soil humidity. The greenhouse layout permits wheelbarrows and wheelchairs. The greenhouses capture waste heat from the below building to reduce heating demands for both the greenhouse on the housing.


EDITOR’S NOTE: The project has been criticized by the Farmers’ confederation as it fails to consider community access and participation in the greenhouses. Access is restricted to ensure commercially viable greenhouse production, however it could be possible to allocate a number of greenhouses for community use. The project could also be improved by introducing closed energy cycle systems like the Greenhouse Village in the Netherlands.

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