Detroit offers many opportunities as it pertains to urban farming. For anyone up for some adventure and hard work, the end reward can be a stable, secure, and unheard of return on investment in today’s volatile market. Let me explain:
For starters, land in Detroit can be purchased at a starting price of $500 per lot, via www.BuildingDetroit.org. There is NO other city in America that offers land and homes that affordably. Of course, there is much rehab to be done on any property listed but that is to be expected for a starting price of $500. You do need to have proof of funds in the bank ($2,500 minimum) so the city knows that you can pay for potential rehabilitation and maintenance of property.
To find a good neighborhood, driving the streets and talking to potential neighbors is the best way to get information and find a solid spot to claim. The website: www.MakeLoveLand.com is a HUGE help, but only if you know what area you are interested in. You can fit Boston, Manhattan, and San Francisco inside the border of Detroit (our city is huge and very diverse), so driving and talking to people is essential to know which area would be a good fit to live in. The culture varies from neighborhood to neighborhood and embodies tradition from the whole world depending on which block you choose to live.
Many Urban Farmers are taking advantage of affordably priced land to build grow operations of all types. On the Westside, The Brightmoor Farmway and The Brightmoor Artisans are a group of permaculture centered neighbors growing fruit, vegetables, hens, honey bees and more to create food security and beauty in a former food desert area of Detroit. Farm City Detroit is an up and coming Westside two acre farm and orchard project which always welcomes volunteers (Tourists can find more info at Motor City Java House on Grand River and Lasher). On the Eastside, Spirit Farm with Faith, Hope and Unity Gardens is leading the way for social justice, food security, and community building. Also, check out Farnsworth Farm on the Eastside for a great neighborhood to grow with. In the middle of Detroit, Food Field has been organically growing crops on a four acre parcel for the past few years. They practice aquaponics, animal husbandry, sell organically grown veggies and fruit to local restaurants and they have a solar power set up unlike any seen in Detroit thus far.
Overall, now is a great time to visit Detroit and learn about the opportunities that exist
Peruse some of the finest Farm-to-Table restaurants around. Cass Café, Chartreuse, and Gold Cash Gold are the city’s top three favorites based on the amount of flavorful, in-season food they serve.