Community-based agriculture and the implications for Central Texas




Witter, Claire Elise

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Due to health and climate change concerns, there is growing interest in a shift away from large-scale agricultural production towards a more localized, organic methodology. These practices help to preserve local ecosystems and require less energy than conventional farming. With this trend, a new form of community development is emerging. Developments that incorporate agriculture are a form of conservation development and have been in existence in their latest form in the United States for the past ten years. Most of the examples are located in the northern, eastern and western United States, including Vermont, Virginia, Illinois, Utah and Georgia. Why has this type of development not yet appeared in Texas? The purpose of this research is to identify the motivations behind creating these developments and to describe how they function, to identify the challenges in the development review process and how they were negotiated, to present a set of issues and lessons learned from the case studies about what matters to the development of a successful case and determine how this applies to potential Texas development. Is this a more sustainable model for development, as opposed to the traditional method for greenfield development? The research is aimed ultimately at exploring this newer type of development, determining whether it is more sustainable than traditional greenfield development and to present a set of issues and lessons drawn from the cases about what matters to the development of a successful case.




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