City and agriculture: developing a peri-urban food hub for the city of Ostend, Belgium.

Authors and Affiliations: 

Elke Vanempten

ILVO-research institute for agriculture, fisheries and food research (Belgium)

Corresponding author: 
Elke Vanempten

The way we produce, and consume, food nowadays has profoundly changed as a result of industrialisation. The world of production differs extremely from that of consumption, both mentally ànd spatially. Reducing the gap between producers and consumers has become a crucial societal challenge from a concern for sustainability. This challenge, among others, formed the basis of a governmentally induced program called 'Pilot projects for a productive landscape'. A group of partners consisting of the Flemish Government Architect; the ILVO-research institute for agriculture, fisheries and food research; the Flemish Government Departments of Agriculture and Fisheries, and of Environment; and the Minister of Agriculture joined forces in 2013. Via the pilot-program these partners are searching for innovative and integrated solutions to current and future challenges of the rural area. This presentation gives the story of Pilot project 'Tuinen van Stene' that aims to establish a food hub between the city of Ostend and its rural environs, searching for new synergies between professional (urban) agriculture, recreational use, water management, heritage, and ecological concerns. First results show that there are still gaps to tackle, i.e. between integrative policy goals aiming for societal innovation concerning food and existing sectoral policy regulations, between regional targets and local policy, and between out-of-the-box designerly thinking and actual implementation.


Vanempten, E & Rogge, E 2015, Ruimte maken door en voor nieuwe allianties in rurale planningsprocessen. in B Geiske & E Vanempten (eds), Ruimte Maken. Stichting Planologische Discussiedagen, pp. 417-430.

Oral or poster: 
Oral presentation
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