Farm Leasing Opportunity

Happening Now

The City of Asheville’s Real Estate Division is excited to present a leasing opportunity for local, organic produce farmers. The City issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) on May 11, 2021 for a 3-year lease beginning on January 1, 2022. View the RFP here.

The opportunity is open to farmers committed to using organic methods to grow produce. Farmers do not need to be Certified Organic but will be expected to use only organic methods throughout the lease.

The City strongly encourages submissions by farmers of color, women farmers, and local small businesses. Its goal is to reach historically underutilized businesses while ensuring wise land stewardship. It will accept proposals from farmers in partnership with other farmers, as well as experienced farmers who are mentoring beginning farmers. 

Click here for a list of organizations that can help farmers who wish to apply for this lease.

 


About the Site

The farm is on 10 acres of land in East Asheville near the Soccer Complex at Azalea Road and Hardesty Lane. The land has been cultivated by a Certified Organic farmer for the past 6 years. It is actually split between two nearby sites around the City’s Beneficial Landfill. The water will need to be pumped from a nearby creek. More details will be provided in the Request for Proposals. 

 


Background

City residents are often surprised to learn that the City of Asheville owns agricultural land next to the John B. Lewis (JBL) Soccer Complex on Azalea Rd.  In 2013, the City of Asheville established a Food Action Plan which was revised in 2017 into the 2017 Municipal Food Policy Goals and Action Plan. 

These plans created a blueprint for the City to act on food policy. Increasing production of regional food and food products is a key part of the plan. Another important part of the plan is preserving farmland and making resources available for urban agriculture. The City is additionally committed to innovative conservation and careful stewardship of the land.


Timeline

March-April 2021: Outreach to the Community

May 11, 2021: Issue Request for Proposals

June 8, 2021: Mandatory Site Visit

June 10, 2021: Deadline for Questions

June 14, 2021: Answers to Questions Posted

June 22, 2021: Deadline for to submit proposals

June 30, 2021: Notification of Applicants Chosen for an Interview

July 6, 2021: Interviews Held

July 12, 2021: Notification of Chosen Applicants

January 1, 2022: Chosen applicant begins lease

 


Frequently Used Terms

Beneficial Landfill: also known as an Inert Debris Landfill. It is only used by City staff and they accept materials like asphalt, concrete, brick, concrete block, gravel, and rock. 

 

Certified Organic: Organic certification is a process for producers of organic food and other organic agricultural products. It generally means that these businesses do not use synthetic chemical pesticides and fertilizers.

 

RFP, or Request for Proposals: a process that asks organizations or businesses to submit their plans and prices for working with the City

 


Supporting Documents

Food Policy Goals & Action Plan

Council Strategic Priorities and Vision 2036 

Asheville Sustainability Management Plan

Resources for Applicants

Satellite view of property

 


Contact Information

Ellen McKinnon, Real Estate Coordinator

Kiera Bulan, Sustainability Coordinator

 


 

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