City’s First Commercial Rooftop Farm Finds Home in Queens
For a few tense months, Ben Flanner’s plan to build a new rooftop farm in Brooklyn hung in the balance. His main investor backed out of the venture, and the building owner from whom he planned to lease roof space for the farm — called the Brooklyn Grange — got cold feet.
“Brooklyn Grange hit some rough seas and for a minute there it looked like it might not be our year to build a farm,” writes Ben and his business partners in the farm’s blog.
Miraculously, the intrepid entrepreneurs survived the unrelenting storm of setbacks and defeats. They fished for alternate sources of funding, and at the eleventh hour found a developer willing to lease the roof of a building not in Brooklyn, but in Long Island City, Queens.
On Thursday, May 13, as soil mix was hoisted by crane onto the 40,000-square-foot roof, the Brooklyn Grange finally came to be. It will be the city’s first commercial rooftop farm, growing tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and leafy greens.