That’s the building of the future, the design firm Kono Designs created an urban farm for the Pasona Tokyo Headquarters in Tokyo. It allows employees to grow and harvest their own food at work. The green space totals over 43,000 square feet with 200 species including fruits, vegetables and rice that are harvested, prepared and served at the cafeterias within the building. It is the largest and most direct farm-to-table of its kind ever realized inside an office building in Japan.
Using both hydroponic and soil based farming, crops and office workers share a common space. For example, tomato vines are suspended above conference tables, lemon and passion fruit trees are used as partitions for meeting spaces, salad leaves are grown inside seminar rooms and bean sprouts are grown under benches. The main lobby also features a rice paddy and a broccoli field. These crops are equipped with HEFL, fluorescent and LED lamps and an automatic irrigation system. An intelligent climate control monitors humidity, temperature and breeze to balance human comfort during office hours and optimize crop growth during after hours. This maximizes crop yield and annual harvests. Seasonal flowers and orange trees are planted on the balconies between the double skinned facade, partially relying on natural exterior climate to showcase changing of leaves and colors to the exterior facade. All plants are maintained and harvested by Pasona employees with the help of an agricultural specialist.
Pasona Urban Farm is beyond aesthetic and visual improvement. It creates a unique workplace environment that promotes worker’s productivity, mental health, and social interaction and engages the wider community of Tokyo by showcasing the benefits and technology of urban agriculture.