After four and a half years, urban farm plot and office have finally been united at
, the urban farming and gardening educational non-profit, and manager of the Ypsilanti Farmers Market.
Earlier this spring, Growing Hope moved into its new headquarters at 922 W. Michigan Ave. in Ypsilanti. Previously, the non-profit's urban farm and storage had been situated on the headquarters property, while its offices were located elsewhere.
The new headquarters, a 1,500-square-foot 1931 house, has been fully remodeled using green features such as geothermal heating and cooling and a patio built of six tons of blue and green recycled crushed bottle glass. A 3,000-square-foot hoop house sits on the 1.44-acre site, whose quarter-acre urban garden produces over one ton of food a year. The property also has a commercially certified kitchen, tool lending library, and meeting and classroom space.
Growing Hope employs 12 staffers year-round. In the summer, interns swell those ranks to 18-20. "We're kind of a major employer in the area as well," says Growing Hope Executive Director Amanda Edmonds.
And with its location just four blocks west of downtown, "We feel like we're a new part of a gateway, kind of the entranceway to downtown Ypsi; Ypsi in general has really revitalized this stretch," Edmonds says. "And we have gotten a lot of feedback from neighbors and other people in the community who have seen our investment in really revitalizing this section of Michigan Avenue."
Source: Amanda Edmonds, Growing Hope executive director
: Tanya Muzumdar