VINES Tudor Street farm to expand

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. - Using a combination of state and federal funding, some flood-prone homes in Binghamton are making way for an expanded urban farm.

Mayor Rich David was joined by Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo and members of VINES Tuesday to announce that the existing urban farm on Tudor Street will grow to five times its current size.

Using FEMA flood money, the city plans to demolish 13 neighboring properties adding two acres to the existing half-acre site.

VINES has received a $100,000 grant from the DEC to build a new greenhouse structure and new raised growing beds and to employ more local youth to work on the farm.

"If we're going to be more resilient, we need to find ways to reuse land in a way that is going to be less costly for our communities to recover from flooding in the future.  Urban agriculture is one of those ways that we can turn flood-prone land into an asset instead of a liability," said VINES Executive Director Amelia LoDolce.

The 13 properties are scheduled to be torn down next Summer as part of a total 29 FEMA demolitions across the city.

LoDolce says VINES hopes to start growing on an additional half acre in 2019, and the entire new property by 2020.

She also says the Grow Binghamton youth program will expand from 16 at-risk teenagers and young adults this past Summer to 20 next year and 25 the year after.

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