Crafting a new identity

The dimensions of the new greenhouse are aligned with the architecture of the existing building. We chose to retain the typical shape of the greenhouse roofline because it simultaneously fit with the UrbanFarmers identity and proudly announced De Schilde’s transformation into an urban farming hotspot.

By leaving a distinct gap between the existing building and the new addition, the two entities can be considered separately or together as one new, holistic whole. In this way, we honour the architectural quality and identity of the former telephone and television factory, designed by modernist architect Dirk Roosenburg in 1959.

“We have empty rooftops and empty industrial buildings. In The Hague, 15% of buildings are empty. Let’s fill them with produce.”
Mark Durno, UrbanFarmers

From factory to innovation hub

After the realisation of Urban Farmers in 2016, the unoccupied building below started to attract all sorts of innovative food start-ups, transforming the vacant space into a food innovation hub. Indeed, the concept of rooftop farming has exciting implications for the futures of cities across the globe.

Urban farms can greatly increase a city’s productive capacity by making use of normally underused roofs. The Urban Farmers’ greenhouse is also an example of cities reconnecting with food. They can bring food production and processing back into the urban realm and closer to its citizens. What’s more, beautiful greenhouses will enrich roofscapes everywhere.

“The municipality hopes the whole building will be a sort of gathering place for education, research and innovation.”
— Joris Wijsmuller, head of sustainability at The Hague city council