Designed for the adAPT NYC micro apartment competition, Bernheimer Architecture and LevenBetts' MicroGreens is an apartment building that combines small spaces and urban farming. The draw of the complex, which was conceptualized with the help of David Leven and Stella Betts, is that every unit has its own edible garden as well as access to a shared vertical greenhouse. MicroGreens also emphasizes how community and social living can be achieved, even in tight living quarters.
The goal of MicroGreens is to create opportunities for urban farming for a better quality of life. The complex is made up of 56 micro-units, each with an outdoor terrace garden that can foster vegetables and small trees. A shared vertical greenhouse gives each resident the opportunity to garden together, while the roof boasts a communal roof garden with plants and lush grass. Each floor leads to the communal greenhouse, which can grow fresh vegetables year round. Aside from producing food, the vertical greenhouse acts as a thermal chimney, providing natural cross ventilation throughout the building.
Vegetables and fruits harvested from the greenhouse can be cooked up in a large communal kitchen, then enjoyed on the roof, or in the communal lounge. The ground floor has room for commercial space, a green market, and bike storage.
MicroGreens relies on passive technology to sustainably heat and cool its units, as well as natural lighting and ventilation. The micro-complex’s focus is on communal living, collective productivity and creating a close-knit neighborhood rather than an anonymous place to call home.