It’s official! We are delighted to announce that PVCF has signed two long-term agricultural leases with the City of Fort Collins! The leases began on November 1st and include 150-acres on South Timberline Road, known as Flores del Sol, and 30 acres on West Vine Dr, called Kestrel Fields. These projects represent a great leap forward for PVCF, and we are grateful to all who have worked over the years to make it possible! Special thanks goes to the City Natural Areas staff, who have patiently stewarded this project through many ups and downs.
Our vision for this land is to continue to relocalize food production in Northern Colorado, focusing on access to farmland for local producers. This includes providing infrastructure as well as partnering with other organizations to increase producer capacity, develop education programming, and grow demand. We will begin by subleasing at reasonable lease rates to core tenants – established, successful producers committed to sustainable agriculture and local marketing of their products.
We are very excited that after five years of PVCF work, our first tenant on these properties is Native Hill Farm. While they continue to collaborate on the Montava project, Native Hill will immediately expand on to Kestrel Fields, the 30-acre parcel on West Vine Dr. This is part of the old Smith Farm and is adjacent to the wonderful community at Grey Rock Commons. There is also a beautiful barn where we will host lots of fun events (that day will come!).
The southern parcel of land, known as Flores del Sol, is much larger and will be more diversified in its use. First, we will sublease some of the land to established farmers through our Farm Commons program. Then, we are working with The Northern Colorado Foodshed Project to launch other opportunities on the remaining land, the first of which will support beginning farmers ready to start their own business via a Farm Incubator. Over time, and with our partners on the property, we will build other essential, exciting elements, including a community garden, multi-farm CSA, meat locker, educational programming, and a food hub. All producers, including those within the Farm Commons, Farm Incubator, and Community Gardens, will use sustainable best practices, with the goal of building and maintaining healthy soil, managing water wisely, minimizing air, water, and climate pollution, and promoting biodiversity.
We are working diligently to begin structuring programming and finalizing partnerships. Native Hill has already broken ground at Kestrel Fields, and Flores del Sol will be up and running by Spring 2021. Stay tuned!
One More Board Member Needed
It is truly an exciting and pivotal time for PVCF, and we need your help! The new land projects will be a massive undertaking, and we won’t be successful without your energy, knowledge, and passion. Regardless of your background or skill set, every bit of support is welcome.
We are still looking for at least one more Board member to help support the leadership of PVCF. This individual does not need to be a PVCF member but must be passionate about the Cooperative’s mission of providing affordable land access to producers in our community and vision of Community Supported Farmland. Elections will be held in January.
Now is the time! Please don’t be modest. If you or someone you know is interested in supporting PVCF in this way, please let us know. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to discuss the opportunity and be more involved in this pioneering relationship with the City and growing our cooperative model of providing local farmland access in our community.
We hope you have a happy and safe holiday season, and we will keep you updated on these exciting developments as they continue to evolve!