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Architecture students reveal urban farm

10th July 2015

Designs for an innovative urban farm will be exhibited in Carlisle later this summer as Northumbria’s architecture students provide the community with a vision of the future.

The architectural designs were first showcased at Reveal, Northumbria’s end of year degree shows on campus, which brings together the final work of graduating students across the creative disciplines. The urban farm project came about after the Sustainability Carlisle Network approached Northumbria’s Architecture Department, ranked 12th in the UK by The Guardian League Tables 2016, for help with the project two years ago. 

Urban Farm Photo - WebFour final year students – Hong Chew, Zenny Cheung, Chun Chiu Chan and Jian Zhang – took up the challenge and came up with innovative plans for a site in Currock which would provide sustainable food, including fish and vegetables, for the local community.

Architecture student Charles Chan from Hong Kong who worked on this project said: “I come from the very urban city of Hong Kong which doesn’t have a lot of space for growing your own fruit and vegetables so this project really interested me.  Using vertical walls you can create Aquaponics where produce is made in small spaces.”

Ben Elliott, Director of Architecture at Northumbria University said: “We’re happy to support schemes like this which don’t have a lot of resources at the beginning of the project. Many of our architecture students love to engage with live projects and we work hard to find connections with people and communities who want to make interesting ideas like this a reality.

“The students not only find it inspiring, but are getting valuable, authentic experience by replicating the process which they will encounter in professional life in the future.  Their passion allows them to engage with the brief and often come up with designs that are noticed by the both the public and architectural practices. This is a key aspect of why our architecture programmes are held in such high regard in the industry.”

Paul Cross, from the Sustainability Carlisle Network, said:  “It’s really positive that this team of students have taken an interest in our project and decided to support it with their work and now an exhibition.  They’ve been up to the site several times and are inspired to come up with ideas which will give communities sustainable futures.”

To find out when designs for the urban farm project will be on show visit

Every year, Northumbria’s degree shows, collectively known as REVEAL, highlight the very best of the University’s architecture, arts, design and media work to prospective students and employers.

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