Mayfield Cyclical Markets
How can food markets and urban farms improve Manchester residents’ access to low cost healthy food, using Mayfield as an urban lab to establish a circular food and material economy?
How can temporary demountable structures enable this change and increase engagement through the site?
In Manchester, 11.5 per cent of people are living in food poverty and more than one in 10 households struggle with food insecurity. Furthermore, fresh healthy food is harder to access and more costly than obesogenic foods, making a healthy lifestyle difficult to achieve when money is tight. By providing the means to grow and access fresh food in urban areas, local people can get involved in urban agriculture and be rewarded for their efforts. Growing food locally also mitigates carbon emissions and plastic involved in food distribution.
Ensuring the principles of a circular zero waste economy are followed in Mayfield will allow surplus food to go where it is most needed such as shelters and soup kitchens. Peelings and waste from food markets can be returned to urban farms through the medium of compost. Construction and packaging materials will also be reclaimed and recycled to reduce the carbon impact of the project. Mayfield presents a unique opportunity for this framework due to the prevalence of unused railway arches and latent construction sites, after which the interventions would move on to new sites in the city. Mayfield would be left with renewed connections to the city and Ardwick, whilst residual sites of urban growing could be incorporated into the planned development by U+I.