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A Greenhouse for Parramore

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Background

When coming up with an idea for this project, I immediately thought of implementing a greenhouse in a nearby neighborhood called Parramore. I attend a high school in downtown Orlando, Florida, USA, close to Parramore. Throughout high school, I have had opportunities to volunteer and help the community of Parramore. I have noticed the abundance of fast food establishments and the lack of grocery stores.

For my project, I came up with the idea of implementing a greenhouse in the community. This greenhouse makes healthy food accessible and builds a sense of community. This also provides opportunities for high school students to volunteer and help out the community of Parramore. High schools can collect and donate seeds for the greenhouse, and students can volunteer to help maintain and take care of the greenhouse.

TED Talk

Video: MacArthur-winning activist Majora Carter details her fight for environmental justice in the South Bronx — and shows how minority neighborhoods suffer most from flawed urban policy.

Context

For years, low-income communities have suffered as grocery stores and healthy food options disappear from their neighborhoods. The consequences are clear: decreased access to food results in communities suffering from diet-related diseases such as such as kidney disease, cardiovascular disease and obesity. The lack of healthy food also hinders the community’s economic development. Instead of grocery stores, there are convenience stores and fast food restaurants that supply cheap, processed foods instead of fresh fruits and healthy options.

Parramore is a neighborhood in west-central Orlando, Florida, USA. It is known as one of Orlando’s poorest neighborhoods. Implementing a greenhouse in this local community would make healthy food accessible. Not only would it provide these families with their own food, but it would build a bigger sense of community.

The Need

A greenhouse will benefit the community of Parramore by supplying the members of the community with food, but also with opportunity for potential income. Members of the community will be able to grow their own produce for their own use or to sell for profit. A greenhouse makes healthy food options accessible, promoting a healthy eating lifestyle.

Building Site

This is the site for the greenhouse. It is near many bus stops and is in the middle of the neighborhood, making it as easily accessible for members of the community. The site is big enough to allow expansion if needed in the future.

Mood Board

Sketches

Front View


Side View

Design

Front View
Back View
Sink and shelves for storing gardening supplies.

The materials used to build the greenhouse are polycarbonate and steel. Steel is low-maintenance and takes excess heat away from the plants. Polycarbonate is similar to glass, however it has the benefits of being lighter in weight and protects against UV rays.

The dimensions of the greenhouse are 13.5 ft x 20 ft x 18 ft.

About Me

My name is Gio Collao. I live in Orlando, Florida. I am a Senior in High School, I will be attending UCF to further my academic career. I plan to major in Architecture and minor in Mandarin Chinese. At my school, I am an active member in Enviro Club. We help maintain our school’s garden and overlook student activities by the lake. I enjoy spending my time volunteering. The idea of this project occurred to me whilst I reflected on my past volunteer opportunities in Parramore. I realized the lack of grocery stores and healthy options. I hope a greenhouse can be implemented in the community, as it will benefit everyone involved.

Please fill out my Google form to provide me with feedback!

Works Cited

Complete Project Design and Documentation: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1_BnoE1Uj2cdxwbYStjSYO6aZQjYbB9owDwz_wdjm2I/edit

Ted Talk: https://www.ted.com/talks/majora_carter_s_tale_of_urban_renewal

https://www.climatecolab.org/contests/2017/exploring-synergistic-solutions-for-sustainable-development/c/proposal/1334276

I encourage you to read the articles below in order to get a further understanding:

https://www.healthcareready.org/blog/why-access-to-healthy-foods-in-low-income-communities-is-important-for-resilience

http://thefoodtrust.org/uploads/media_items/grocerygap.original.pdf

Mood board images from Google and Pinterest.

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COMMENTS: 1
  1. April 25, 2019 by Elisabeth.Jamieson Reply

    Gio- This is incredible! I think the support of having a community greenhouse so there is access to good, fresh, food is awesome. Growing up in West Virginia, I have seen many people not have access to fresh food because of the price, and I think that something like this would benefit communities greatly.
    Lovely project!
    Reid

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