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Authors: Fernandez, Emma
Advisors: Kinsey, Daniel
Department: Woodrow Wilson School
Class Year: 2013
Abstract: This thesis examines urban agriculture, the growing of food for personal consumption, donation, or sale within urban areas, as a strategy for the revitalization of inner cities in America. It uses Newark, New Jersey as a case study for examining policy tools that can develop the presence of urban agriculture within the city. Urban agriculture can create jobs and strengthen the local economy, and the presence and retail of urban agriculture can increase business for a city’s downtown establishments. Urban agriculture is a productive means of developing vacant lots, and in doing so, can help reduce crime rates and strengthen community networks. Urban agriculture also brings health benefits to city residents by providing opportunities for exercise and relaxation, improving residents’ diets, and developing urban food security. The central claim of this thesis is that urban agriculture can facilitate growth and recovery in Newark, and that the City should thus use policy tools to develop urban agriculture as both an interim and long-term land use strategy. Newark has both the opportunity and the need for developing an increased presence of urban agriculture. Like many post-industrial cities, Newark has high rates of vacancy, obesity, poverty, and crime. Based on these commonalities with other small American cities, Newark can serve as a constructive case study for examining the potential of urban agriculture. Newark also provides an interesting case study because it has both the beginnings of an urban agriculture movement and room for growth in this area. Based on the examples of a range of successful agriculture projects and policy changes in North American cities, and an analysis of current conditions in Newark, this thesis makes eleven recommendations to the City of Newark: (1) Amend the Newark Zoning Ordinance to make community gardens, market gardens, and urban farms permitted uses in a variety of residential, commercial, and industrial zones, as well as to permit agricultural retail; (2) Amend the Newark Zoning Ordinance to create an Urban Agriculture district; (3) Integrate urban agriculture into City Redevelopment Plans; (4) Develop shortand mid-term programs to lease City-owned vacant land for urban agriculture; (5) Amend the Land Disposition Policy to acknowledge urban agriculture as a desired land use; (6) Strengthen Newark’s Adopt-a-Lot program by cataloging, evaluating, and publicizing available vacant lots in a registry of vacant lots suitable for urban agriculture; (7) Facilitate and develop more agricultural education and technical training programs; (8) Increase water access for gardens and farms; (9) Link Newark’s “Green Streets Initiative” to food production; (10) Develop new urban agriculture grant and loan programs, and help prospective urban farmers and gardeners connect to existing programs; and (11) Undertake an economic impact analysis of urban agriculture in Newark.
Extent: 129 pages
Access Restrictions: Walk-in Access. This thesis can only be viewed on computer terminals at the Mudd Manuscript Library.
Type of Material: Princeton University Senior Theses
Language: en_US
Appears in Collections:Woodrow Wilson School, 1929-2016

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