Community + Partners

UrbanPonics means, literally, "city works." To us, this means developing a business organization that works on many levels, for many people. Our vision encompasses a new way of doing things, from our sustainable growing methods that produce fresh, affordable food with minimal impact on the environment, to our responsible participation in the communities where we do business, providing training and employment to community members who have been traditionally underemployed.

Partner Organizations
UrbanPonics' business model includes ongoing partnerships with local social-enterprise organizations to create jobs, stimulate economic development, provide affordable healthy food sources, and educate the community about healthy eating. UrbanPonics is also working with strategic technology partners that share our commitment to sustainable, affordable processes that represent the leading edge of urban agricultural applications.

  • North Lawndale Employment Network
    North Lawndale Employment Network (NLEN), a social-enterprise partner, is a nonprofit membership organization committed to improving the earnings potential of local residents through innovative employment opportunities that lead to economic advancement and an improved quality of life. A flagship program of NLEN, U-Turn Permitted trains formerly incarcerated individuals to enter the workforce successfully through the development of skills, habits, attitudes, and values consistent with success in life and at work. Another successful NLEN program, Sweet Beginnings, offers training in apiculture (beekeeping) and urban farming, skills that make them desirable employees for ventures such as UrbanPonics.

  • Sol Xorce
    Concentrating Solar Thermal Power (CSP) is an innovative approach to supplying energy for heating and cooling, making environmentally friendly solar power a cost-effective alternative. Sol Xorce designs, manufactures, and integrates CSP receivers into utility-scale and distributed energy systems, serving commercial, industrial, and utility clients with products that can cut costs in half. UrbanPonics is partnering with Sol Xorce to explore sustainable-growing applications of these technologies for heating, cooling, and lighting our agricultural environments.

  • CogniTek
    CogniTek creates energy conversion products with a less than five year return on investment that reduce the environmental impact associated with traditional energy usage and leverage renewable energy technology. Patented products are cost-effective and take an integrated approach to maximize efficiency within commercial and industrial applications. UrbanPonics is partnering with CogniTek to explore new applications of advanced building and structural materials, and solar-based energy conversion and refrigeration technology, into our growing environments.

  • Purdue University
    UrbanPonics, Orbital Technologies Corporation, and other growers are partnering with an educational consortium led by Purdue University to explore the application of light-emitting diode (LED) arrays for use in commercial greenhouses, dramatically reducing electricity consumption.

We understand that if a business is to be a truly responsible member of the community in which it is located, it must both address the needs and derive the benefits of that community. UrbanPonics' initial greenhouse location, in Chicago's North Lawndale community, will require more than 50 full-time, permanent employees once it is fully operational. North Lawndale suffers from high unemployment and is home to many residents who are considered traditionally difficult to employ or underemployed.

UrbanPonics is partnering with the North Lawndale Employment Network to train residents and create jobs within the community. In addition to temporary construction employment, UrbanPonics will create at least 100 new, permanent positions, which include hourly jobs in roles ranging from seeding, harvesting, and packaging to production management and delivery to market. Salaried positions include clerical and administrative staff as well as marketing, human resources, and community-relations managers.

UrbanPonics is committed to providing continuing education for our employees, so that job opportunities extend into career opportunities, and employees and their families become knowledgeable about healthy eating options. To support this, we plan to incorporate ongoing training, education, and career-planning programs into our employees' work schedules by partnering with local colleges and universities. We will bring local chefs and nutritional experts in to conduct seminars on healthy eating and food preparation. To further increase familiarity with our healthy foods, we will also reserve a percentage of our crop for the workers who produce it, providing wholesome food for their own families and to distribute among their friends and neighbors. As members of the communities in which we are located, UrbanPonics employees are in a unique position to serves as ambassadors for "green" careers, healthy diets and lifestyles, bringing the knowledge they gain on the job home to their neighborhoods.

Food Deserts
In basic terms, food deserts are urban areas that lack access to fresh foods such as produce, but often have an abundance of convenience stores and fast-food outlets. A lack of access to and education about healthy food choices can have significant effects on the health and stability of communities. Reducing urban food deserts requires a variety of approaches, including locating traditional supermarkets in underserved neighborhoods, distributing fresh foods through nontraditional models such as food trucks and convenience stores, establishing local farmers markets and community gardens. UrbanPonics seeks to contribute to the solution by producing fresh foods right in these communities, making them affordable and convenient to local retailers and restaurants. Additionally, our workforce will help educate members of their communities about the importance of healthy eating, and we will work with local entrepreneurs and businesses interested in advancing nontraditional produce-distribution models.


Click Here to view a list of our crops (what's available now)

  • photo 1
  • photo 2
  • photo 3
  • photo 4
  • photo 5
  • photo 6

Seeding the next crop of Bibb lettuce for our NFT system.

The concept lab NFT system.

Basil ready to harvest for market.

Planting the next generation of Bibb lettuce in our concept lab NFT system.

Bibb lettuce ready for harvest.

UrbanPonics products kept fresh in biodegradable containers that preserve freshness.

barons 13s jordan 13 barons barons 13s jordan 13 barons jordan 13 barons barons 13s barons 13s barons 13s barons 13s jordan 13 hologram jordan 13 hologram hologram 13s jordan 13 hologram hologram 13s hologram 13s hologram 13s jordan 13 hologram jordan 13 hologram legend blue 11s legend blue 11s legend blue 11s legend blue 11s jordan 11 legend blue jordan 11 legend blue legend blue 11s legend blue 11s legend blue 11s legend blue 11s black infrared 6s black infrared 6s black infrared 6s black infrared 6s jordan 11 legend blue jordan 11 legend blue black infrared 6s jordan 6 black infrared jordan 6 black infrared black infrared 6s jordan 11 legend blue louis vuitton outlet louis vuitton outlet legend blue 11s jordan 11 legend blue black infrared 6s legend blue 11s black infrared 6s michael kors outlet black infrared 6s coach factory outlet jordan 11 legend blue jordan 11 legend blue black infrared 6s black infrared 6s beats by dre cheap jordan 11 legend blue beats by dre black friday jordan 6 black infrared michael kors outlet 3m 13s jordan 13 3m reflective bred 13s jordan retro 11 jordan 13 bred jordan 13 Hologram 3m 13s 3m 13s 3m 13s jordan 13 Hologram barons 13s coach black friday barons 13s Hologram 13s jordan 13 barons jordan 13 3m 3m 13s 3m 13s jordan 13 barons Hologram 13s