Boston Red Sox Fenway Park rooftop garden plan for MCG, Melbourne Park

The bosses of MCG and Melbourne Park are considering a Boston Red Sox program that has turned an underutilized part of Fenway Park baseball stadium into a huge rooftop fresh fruit and veg farm.

Stadium gardens to feed fans and families in need could be built on major grounds such as the MCG and Melbourne Park according to an innovative model already in place in the United States.

The Boston Red Sox transformed an underutilized part of its famous Fenway Park baseball stadium into a 464 square meter rooftop fresh produce farm in 2015.

“Fenway Farms” now produces over 1814 kg of food like carrots, kale, spinach and lettuce each year which it uses in its base restaurants and donates to charity.

The heads of MCG and Melbourne and the Olympic Parks Trust expressed interest in the initiative, which the Red Sox also attributed to improving air quality and conserving energy.

MOPT Managing Director John Harnden hailed the Fenway Farms model as “a great initiative”, revealing plans to adopt a garden of a similar size to Melbourne Park.

“As part of the current plans for the third stage of the Melbourne Park redevelopment, valued at $ 972 million, we are delighted to share that a vegetable garden will be part of our new functional and multimedia center,” he said. -he declares.

“This will allow our chefs to prepare meals using fresh, local produce for our customers and is one of the many sustainability initiatives included in the design. “

He said the stadium garden “will achieve impressive and inspiring results – from water conservation to energy use or food waste.”

MCC CEO Stuart Fox said the rooftop garden concept had merit as another way to engage the community and build on the MCG’s green credentials.

“MCC, as the custodian of the MCG and Yarra Park, supports and looks for ways to increase community participation within the compound,” he said.

“By maintaining the state of Yarra Park for continued use by the community, MCC’s commitment to sustainability and the environment is at the forefront. “

The MCG already has the first organic recycling program onsite at an Australian stadium, turning food waste into product mixed with sand and used as a top dressing to maintain Yarra Park.

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It turned 154 tons of organic matter into 42 tons of soil food last year.

QT Melbourne executive chef Andy Harmer said a rooftop vegetable garden, installed in the town hall two years ago, was living proof that it was possible to grow food in the city. city.

The popular nightclub has around 80 planters on its roof and grows everything from lemongrass and lillypilly to onions, potatoes and strawberries, which are then used in cooking and to create cool cocktails.

QT also launched a Secret Garden Bar on Thursday, allowing the first 40 to 50 people to climb to the roof for a special experience among the foliage.

“I think one of the main driving forces behind this was educating the guys in the kitchen as to where the produce comes from and how it’s grown,” Harmer said.

“A lot of people think their food ends up on their plate.

“If you want to have a garden, you might as well use it.

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