The Conversion of Retail Using the Vertical Farm Method of Indoor Agriculture


When I moved to Puerto Rico, I decided to take the advice of a previous mentor of mine, Pat DiFilipo of Turner Construction. He told me that if I ever had the opportunity to get a Master’s degree, I should. Before I left, I had brunch with my Godmother, who mentioned a colleague of hers who received a degree from Syracuse all online while working. I scoured the internet for the right program and applied to Georgetown’s Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate. After two years and much discipline, I would recommend this program to any person wishing to progress their professional career in Real Estate. Below is my introduction and attached thesis with a proforma model for anyone to use as open-source and the growth of Vertical Agriculture.


Ten years ago, I was enrolled in a critical writing class at my alma mater, Virginia Tech.  The final paper was assigned, and the topic was on anything you felt was essential to be written about.  Two years previous, I had taken a study abroad agricultural trip to Mexico.  We traveled all over the country, seeing plants and animals being produced for production and sale to the United States.  The most surprising thing I noticed was atop a mountain ridge on the Baja peninsula.  There were Israeli-designed greenhouses, as far as the eye could see, growing tomatoes. Most of the Northeastern US’s tomato supply comes from the Baja peninsula.  I could not believe that most of the tomatoes I ate traveled three thousand miles before they got into my pasta sauce.  The other thing that caught my attention was a bucket at an agricultural research institute in Enseñada.  The bucket was filled with water which had koi fish in it.   Pipes shot out of the bucket, which held a net for several tomato plants to grow on. The contraption was an experiment in aquaponics using recycled fish feces to fertilize tomato plants and produce a crop.  After this wildly enlightening experience, I had never thought about where food comes from.  Because of this, I decided to write my paper on the Vertical Farm, a unique outlandish idea of growing produce within a skyscraper in a city center.  My English Professor was not super-impressed by my outlook, but then again, he was not a Master Builder.  Fast forward ten years, the concept of vertical agriculture has grown legs and come out on the scene of real estate.   Multiple startups have started exploring growing produce on roofs or in storage containers in the heart of a metropolis.  The following attachments below will discuss indoor crop farming’s proliferation and its validity as a classification in modern real estate and its contribution to our food source.

Published by iphoenix72

Matthew M. Emma was born in New York, NY where he currently resides after receiving his degree in Building Construction and Real Estate Development from Virginia Polytechnic and State University. Matt loves everything web related including PHP and WordPress! Featured in ENR for developing a construction program based on WordPress during the renovation of the new Madison Square Garden (Even featured in several of the Transforamtion show episodes). Let’s go Rangers!

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