Published 11/12/2015

Svensson screens save energy in the world’s largest urban rooftop greenhouse

Chicago is now home to the world’s largest rooftop greenhouse. The 75,000 square foot (6967 m2) state-of-the-art greenhouse is located on the rooftop of Method products manufacturing facility.

The rooftop operation is a unique partnership between Gotham Greens, who owns and operates the greenhouse, and Method products, an industry leader in eco-friendly cleaning products.  The greenhouse built in 2015, is Gotham Greens’ largest and most technologically advanced urban greenhouse to date and the Method manufacturing facility it sits above is the world's first LEED-Platinum certified manufacturing facility in its industry, making the operation a groundbreaking vision.      

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The Greenhouse, powered by 100% renewable energy, will produce nearly 1 million pounds of sustainably grown, premium-quality leafy greens and herbs annually. The produce will be distributed through local Chicago retailers, restaurants, farmer's markets and community groups.

The urban greenhouse is capable of producing over 50% more crop than conventional greenhouses while using 25% less energy per pound of crop produced. Highly sophisticated systems manage heating, cooling, irrigation and plant nutrition to ensure optimal growing conditions all year round.

Svensson TEMPA screens are installed to help reduce the operations energy demand. During cooler months the screens act as thermal blankets retaining heat at night, reducing heating costs. In warmer months TEMPA provides shade protection, reflecting sunlight to keep the crops from overheating.

By growingly locally, Gotham Greens eliminates the food waste and environmental footprint linked to shipping produce long distances. For the consumer, this means finding the freshest and most nutritious produce imaginable, year-round. Often, the Gotham Greens produce Chicago residents will find in stores or at their local farmer's markets will have been harvested and packaged that very same day, even in the middle of winter.

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