A Growing Problem: Taking Control of Food Security / by DK GR

DKGR is using Rapid Prototyping and Iterative Design to help combat Food Deserts on the Near East Side of Indianapolis. With the recent loss of Pogue’s Run Co-op, the availability of fresh, healthy food in the area was drastically decreased.

Moving Forward 2.0, itself a prototype, is a housing program from IHCDA with a goal of combating generational poverty by lowering the total cost of housing, transportation, education and nutrition. Partnered with CAGI, John Boner Neighborhood Centers, the City of Indianapolis, and TWG Development, DKGR began to explore options for on-site agriculture to produce 10% of a family’s required Daily Nutritional Value.

While many effective, modular systems exist for commercial growing, these systems can be expensive, expansive, and inflexible. The system needed to be able to produce mature plants, microgreens, and start seeds while being simple to use and low maintenance. Additionally, the system needs to be flexible and grow with its user.

Inspired by the efficiency of certain leaf cells for both spatial regulation and intercellular transport, DKGR’s design took on an elongated hexagonal shape that allows for up to 8 units in 1 square foot of space.

The modular system includes built-in hose connectors to enable it to be used in all styles of indoor growing including Wick Systems, Deep Water Culture, Drip and Drain, Aeroponics and as a component in Aquaponics Systems. This will allow the system to be used, not only for food production, but for teaching and learning.