The new Education Center will follow universal design methods, as well as best sustainable building practices to ensure accessibility and longevity while promoting green technology. The Center will have 9,000 square feet of space for gardens, classrooms, and urban agricultural areas for students to gain hands-on experience in our STEM curriculum.
Inside, students will have access to their own aquaponic growing gallery featuring fish-breeding tanks and soilless beds. In the main production greenhouse, they will encounter floating rafts, wicking troughs, and growing towers, all using fish waste to nourish the plants, which in turn clean the water for the fish. A demonstration kitchen, multi-purpose classroom, event space and lab will provide spaces for more advanced learning and exploration.
Outside, students will work with seasonal crops growing in several distinctive garden areas including a climbing-fruit courtyard, a roof-top garden, raised beds, and terraces along Interstate Highway 44. Students will maintain gardens for bee and butterfly pollinators, learning the importance of native plant species and biodiversity to ensure a healthy environment.
This state-of-the-art facility will enable students from around the St. Louis region to engage in various ways of growing and producing food year-round in the heart of the city.