WESTBROOK, Maine — The City of Westbrook will soon be growing produce a little differently. Starting in the spring of 2021, a company called Vertical Harvest will begin building a vertical greenhouse on Mechanic Street.
The planned 70,000 square ft facility will initially grow a variety of microgreens and lettuce. The company estimates the greenhouse will produce 1 million pounds of produce per year to the city and surrounding areas.
Westbrook will be the company’s second location in the United States. The co-founder said she came up with the vertical idea after realizing the need for fresh produce year-round in an urban setting.
“We want to grow as much food as possible. We want to employ as many people as possible. We want to do both year-round. That’s what gave us the idea to go up. So at its heart, we want to be able for these farms to serve the community in which it sits, so that means being in the heart of our urban centers,” said co-founder Nona Yehia.
Yehia said the greenhouse will bring 50 full-time equivalent jobs to the city.
The mayor of Westbrook said the greenhouse is part of a larger project, which will include a parking garage and new apartments.