Share story

CHICAGO (AP) — Construction has begun on what will soon become Chicago’s largest agricultural greenhouse — a project many hope will breathe new life into a historically underdeveloped neighborhood.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel joined community leaders Thursday to break ground on the 140,000-square-foot (13,006-square-meter) greenhouse. The facility will be run by Gotham Greens, a New York-based produce company that uses clean energy to grow fresh produce year-round.

Emanuel says the greenhouse will continue the “economic renaissance” in Chicago’s South Side Pullman community. The $12.6 million complex is expected to create 60 permanent and 70 construction jobs.

This is Gotham Greens’ second facility in the Pullman neighborhood. The company also runs a 75,000-square-foot (6,968-square-meter) rooftop greenhouse that provides fresh produce to local and national grocery stores across the Chicago area.