Urban agriculture and desire: Commentary on chapter 6 "Resilient City = Carrot City: Urban agriculture theories and designs"

Andre Viljoen, Katrin Bohn

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This text is a commentary and reflection on the chapter by academics Gorgolewski, Komisar and Nasr who identify a series of 'wicked questions' in relation to the evolution of resilient and economically-viable urban agriculture. Bohn and Viljoen’s commentary discusses alternative readings of the current status for urban agriculture, acknowledging the sometimes contradictory conclusions that can be drawn. The authors suggest that the wicked problems related to food systems will require wicked solutions if change is to be managed, beneficial and evolutionary. Furthermore, they propose that human desire needs to be considered alongside environmental needs, arguing that urban agriculture practices could usefully align with current interests in food culture and public open space. Using exemplary urban agriculture and architectural projects, they discuss how desire may be evoked. Relationships between attractive landscapes similar to those produced by urban agriculture and increases in land value, potential gentrification and the reliance of urban farmers on niche markets are included as examples of some problems associated with enhanced desire. Reflecting on Viljoen and Bohn’s own practice, their commentary concludes with approaches that may assist in the practical advancement towards more resilient cities utilising urban agriculture to improve local food systems and equality. The concept of Continuous Productive Urban Landscape (CPUL) is introduced as well as the CPUL City Actions, a toolkit for advancing urban agriculture as an essential and desired element of urban infrastructure.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIntegrated urban agriculture
Subtitle of host publicationPrecedents, practices, prospects
EditorsRobert France
Place of PublicationFaringdon
PublisherLibri Publishing
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9780993370625
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2016


  • Urban agriculture
  • Urban design
  • Architectural design
  • Sustainable cities
  • Resilience


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