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  • 02.10.14

There Is A Huge Underground Farm Hiding 100 Feet Beneath London’s Streets

It’s hard to find enough space for urban farms to grow enough local produce to feed a big city. Unless you put the whole farm below in an abandoned tunnel.

The newest branch line of the London Underground doesn’t go anywhere. But it does produce a lot of nice food to eat. It’s an aquaponic hydroponic farm, 100 feet below the surface, set to open this March.

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With sky-high rents in central London, it made sense for the startup behind the project, Zero Carbon Food, to look for an unconventional farm site. And the location, beneath the Northern line, puts the produce near a lot of restaurant customers. That reduces the miles that food has to travel to reach the table. Zero Carbon Food is now selling stock online–you can see its full pitch below:

The 2.5 acre project relies on its location in a tunnel to reduce heating and cooling costs. The temperature stays stable at 60 degrees all year round. There aren’t many airborne pests to worry about either. A simple filter takes out any nasties, and lets the produce–which includes pea shoots, rocket, broccoli, mustard leaf and basil–grow without pesticides.


Richard Ballard and Steven Dring came up with the idea two years ago, wanting to reduce agricultural impacts. “Integrating farming into the urban environment makes a huge amount of sense and we’re delighted that we’re going to make it a reality,” Ballard says.

About the author

Ben Schiller is a New York staff writer for Fast Company. Previously, he edited a European management magazine and was a reporter in San Francisco, Prague, and Brussels.

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