Paris to turn a third of its green space into urban farms
France's famously beautiful capital is not a place you'd expect to find chickens, beehives and rows of neatly planted cabbages – but urban farming is flourishing in Paris.
It all started when the city's mayor, Anne Hidalgo, who was elected in 2014, declared her intention to make Paris a greener city. The Paris government responded to her call in 2016 by launching Parisculteurs, a project which aims to cover the city's rooftops and walls with 100 hectares (247 acres) of vegetation by 2020. One third of the green space, according to its plan, should be dedicated to urban farming.
So far, 74 companies and public institutions have signed a charter to partner with the city in developing urban agriculture. "Paris not only intends to produce fruit and vegetables but also (plans to) invent a new urban model ... Citizens want new ways to get involved in the city's invention and be the gardeners," says Penelope Komites, deputy mayor of Paris, who is in charge of the city's parks and green spaces.
Today, Paris counts about 15 hectares (37 acres) of urban agriculture. To reach its goal of 30 hectares before 2020 is a challenge. But there are plenty of projects in the works.