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Pilot project manager:
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Pilot Location:
Via castiglione 134, 40136 Bologna

SERRA MADRE: A food hub for education, leisure and urban farming innovation

Background:
Within the city largest urban park (Giardini Margherita) the FoodE SB member Kilowatt manages the space “Le Serre” (whose property belongs to the municipality of Bologna). Within “Le Serre”, a Food and Sustainability hub (SERRA MADRE) has been created, and activities of aquaponics, community gardening, child nursery, a food bistrot, co-working, social and artistic events and education take place. In 2019, about 120’000 local inhabitants and visitors took part in the activities promoted.

Vision:
The Pilot aims at strengthen and innovate the artistic and cultural proposal of the “Le Serre” by focusing on the creation of a center of artistic production that connects the world of research (scientific and humanistic), the world of business and art around the great challenges of our time: sustainability and climate change.
The available greenhouses (currently under renovation thanks to its own resources and crowdfunding) and open spaces are suitable for growing a range of local horticultural products with the aim of defining protocols for sustainable urban cultivation (e.g., on aquaponics and hydroponics) and involving local organizations and citizens (e.g., through community gardening and educational events) also increasing their awareness on food production and safety. The greenhouses of the gardens, therefore, will be transformed into an even larger ecosystem: from a hub that hosts seasonal programming to a center of artistic-cultural production, activating permanent laboratories in which artistic investigation helps to understand complexity and build positive imaginaries that guide actions for change. A synergistic, inclusive and participatory approach where environmental sustainability and culture dialogue, to imagine a desirable and sustainable future.

In the large outdoor space will be created an above-ground bio-lake for the treatment of rainwater depurated by plants, connected to the aquaponic cultivation system, a model of circular economy in symbiosis with the ecosystem and functional at the same time to spread a virtuous model of above-ground cultivation with high yield and low waste of resources.
The old seedbeds will be transformed into new seats surrounded by greenery, in direct contact with the tanks dedicated to aquaponics, all within a regenerated garden that will expand the spaces accessible to the public dedicated to relaxation, leisure, cultural events and food production for the city of Bologna.

In collaboration with FoodE partners:
Municipality of Bologna (BOL), University of Bologna (IT)

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