The growing season in most ski towns is short. After all, they're called ski towns for a reason: an abundance of wintry weather. One innovative project in Jackson, Wyo. is looking to skip the early frost entirely with a vertical farm built on the side of a parking garage deep in the heart of ski country. Vertical Harvest of Jackson Hole plans on building a three-story, 13,500-square-foot greenhouse that will operate year-round on a sliver of land that's only 150 feet by 30 feet. Vertical Harvest might not have the capacity to provide tomatoes to all of the town's winter guests, but 95 percent of the $2.35 million project's eventual harvest is already spoken for, according to City Lab.
The three-story setup is an ingenious combination of greenhouse strategies: the first two levels function as typical, single-level greenhouses while the top level will feature a rotating carousels of plants.
Vertical Harvest's small footprint is especially important because Jackson, like many ski towns, is surrounded by federal land. Even the local airport sits on National Park Service land, making space a prime commodity.
The project broke ground in December and is targeting an opening date of early 2016. Thanks to the farming methods used, the first crop should only be a couple months behind.
· Vertical Harvest [Official site]
· The Case for Vertical Farming in Small-Town Wyoming [City Lab]
· Vertical Harvest aims for year-round veggies in Jackson Hole & jobs, too [Mountain Town News]
· See How Jackson Hole Has Changed From 1969 to Today [Curbed Ski]
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· Don't Worry Jackson Hole, the Hooters Rumor is a Hoax [Curbed Ski]
· Looking Back at 50 Years of Jackson Hole Skiing [Curbed Ski]
· The 18 Best Hot Spots for Eating & Drinking in Jackson Hole [Curbed Ski]