1.  Farm “Campus” of  (10) 40 foot shipping containers 2. Square Roots Co-founder Tobias Peggs  3. Insulated Storefronts  4. Shipping Container Interior: zipgrow towers on gantries  5. Growing Greens  6. Harvesting Greens






Squareroots: Hyper-Dense Urban Agriculture via Hydroponics

ORE was hired by Square Roots to create minimal viable product for their first urban farming campus and office/community educational space.

The Square Roots farming campus is located in Brooklyn, New York, at the former Pfizer factory-now home to a host of NYC food businesses. The building was originally Pfizer’s oldest active manufacturing plant and is on the same site where Pfizer was founded in 1849 by the cousins Charles Pfizer and Charles Erhart of Germany. The company closed down its Brooklyn headquarters in 2008 after more than 150 years of pharmaceutical manufacturing. Since then, it has become home to small food and beverage producers, start-ups, non-profits and food kitchens and commissaries.

One of ORE’s challenges in this project was the need to re-engineer the off-the-shelf technology to fit within New York’s dense, urban environment.  ORE redesigned the water supply and waste disposal systems to be treated naturally in an on-site bioswale.  Another adaptation to the container system that ORE designed was retrofitting the existing container door end to receive an insulated glass storefront window.  ORE felt this additions was important so visitors to the farm could to witness the technology at work within each container, without compromising the farms’ performance or laboratory conditions.

Square Roots came to the old Pfizer building in Fall, 2016. The Square Roots campus consists of an office space located on the 3rd floor of the building and ten hydroponic, controlled-climate container farms in the parking lot downstairs. Each hydroponic farm in the campus of shipping containers can yield more than more 50 lbs of leafy greens each week (the equivalent of two acres of farmland annually) and only needs about eight gallons of water a day. The vertical hydroponics create extremely dense crop yield. Square Roots brings together technology, entrepreneurship, and a love for local, real food to empower leaders in urban agriculture. Ten real food entrepreneurs grow local, tasty, food inside the container farms located in the parking lot.

Apply now if you’d like to join the food revolution.

Client: Square Roots
Area: 14,000 sf
Status: Completed
Photos: ©Square Roots