As Damien O'Sullivan, a designer in Rotterdam, walked the waterways in Amsterdam, he noticed that the typical tourist boats would make fantastic greenhouses—they are ideally suited to gathering heat and light with their large glass windows. If tourists were replaced with vegetables, and if the boat was retrofitted with some farming and energy harvesting equipment, these little ships could make excellent, small-sized, mobile urban farms.
This is the backbone of Boatanic, O'Sullivan's new proposal for a distributed urban farm set to debut in 2011. Boatanic will offer fresh, year-round seasonal produce, sold directly from the quay and by subscription. Bike delivery services will be available to local restaurants buying wholesale. The system also proposes a return to commerce in inner-city canals, which have become less popular as citizens favor roadway transportation.
The proposal is on exhibit at Fort Aspen in Amsterdam, but the system will be expandable to waterway cities in moderate climates everywhere.
The project is still in its very early stages, but keep a close eye on their website, or get in touch to learn more.
More images from the proposal after the jump.