The Canopy - Waverley station revisited


After 50 years of globalisation, agriculture has recently seen a boost from “local sourcing” in food production. Communities involved in this shift are not seeking self-sufficiency but a gradual reduction on their dependency on non-local sources of supply. This stimulates peri-urban organic agriculture but it could also be an opportunity to look differently at our cities.

Canopy Night
Edinburgh is articulated around its iconic castle but also very much around its main train station: Waverley. At first look, Waverley, with its simple glass roof unfolding under the North Bridge does not look like a train station: it rather looks like a giant greenhouse. So why not pretend for a while that Waverley is a greenhouse along with a food market? Let's invite producers, farmers along with schools, locals & visitors to occupy Edinburgh city centre and share their experiences about growing food .. and eating it.    

Let's invite everyone under .... “The Canopy”
- In biology, the canopy is the aboveground portion of a plant community formed by plant crowns
.- In architecture, a canopy is an overhead roof giving protection from the weather.


This will be a real life urban farming experiment which could become permanent. The glass roof will be offering shelter and light but what about a space to grow? The train station currently has a vast amount of unoccupied floor space behind its front office which could be used to grow food on the premises; on the ground but also possibly on the kiosks rooftops, and why not start hanging planters from the frame? It all looks ready for the transformation

Canopy Stalls
The project is social & educational as it aims to invite schools for a fun day at the station. It will also link to other events like possibly the Science Festival which already is focusing on the future of food in Scotland and worldwide.    
The heart of Edinburgh can be key in urban logistics and in pioneering energy sobriety both in terms of transports efficiency (thousands of people use the station everyday to commute) but also in terms of fundamental solar energy use (heat & light).  If successful, the Canopy would also become a destination in itself and at the same time promote transports by train from and to Edinburgh.    
Canopy East Roofs
The success of the various urban farming experiments all over the world makes us believe that this is worth trying in the Scottish capital. It would also impact on a much bigger scale like and inspire other countries where food safety and nutrition are critical.