Plans for a hydroponic vertical greenhouse in downtown Lancaster are moving ahead, its backers say, and the facility, budgeted at $16 million to $17 million, could start operating in the fall of 2020.
“This is our flagship project,” said Corey Fogarty, president of the nonprofit Lancaster Urban Farming Initiative.
The aim is not only to produce fresh, healthy vegetables in an environmentally friendly and economically sustainable manner, but to employ people with physical and developmental disabilities as part of a diverse, inclusive work force.
Nona Yehia, co-founder and CEO of Vertical Harvest, the Wyoming-based company partnering on the project, said it has the potential “to create a model that can affect communities all over the globe.”
Lancaster Chamber President Tom Baldrige said he’s impressed by the way the project combines Lancaster County’s agricultural heritage with the area’s expanding high-tech capabilities.
“It sets a vision for our future,” he said.