Located in Detroit's North End Neighborhood, MUFI's campus is nearly 3 acres large. This "agrihood" is being positioned as an epicenter of urban agriculture and features a collection of projects, each of which is in varying development stages. Approximately 1/3rd of the campus is dedicated to production farming, another 1/3rd to interactive agriculture, and the remaining 1/3rd to hardscaped space (i.e., structures). This space is heavily themed by "adaptive reuse of the built environment" to demonstrate everything from best practices for sustainable urban agriculture, practical strategies for increasing food security, cost-competitive and scalable models for blight deconstruction, and Innovation in Blue and Green infrastructure.
Their mission is to use urban agriculture as a platform to promote education, sustainability, and community to empower urban communities, solve many social problems facing Detroit, and potentially develop a broader model for redevelopment for other urban communities. And with the help of over 10,000 volunteers, they have been able to grow and distribute over 50,000 pounds of produce (grown using organic methods.)
The MUFI is also converting a distressed three-story, six-unit apartment complex into a LEED Platinum designated Community Resource Center featuring administrative and multipurpose space, production and packaging kitchen, and marketplace. The production farm has produced over 50,000 pounds of produce since 2011. It goes to individual households using a pay-what-you-can-model, local markets, local restaurants & vendors, food pantries, local churches, Coalition on Temporary Shelters (COTS) & Forgotten Harvest.
Some additional projects include converting a blighted home into a rainwater harvesting cistern, shipping container building project as a pilot for a cost-competitive blight remediation strategy, Children's Sensory Garden, and a high-density fruit orchard. Are you excited to learn more? Then sign up for a volunteer day on the farm. https://www.miufi.org/get_involved