The Role of Urban Farming in Revitalizing Cities for Climate Change Adaptation and Attaining Sustainable Development: Case of the City of Conegliano, Italy

  • Haidy Mousa
  • May Elhadidi
  • Hadil Abdelhafez
  • Pietro Tonini
  • Lorenzo Fellin
  • Antonella Frongia
  • Virginia Castellucci
  • Mohsen Aboulnaga
Part of the Innovative Renewable Energy book series (INREE)


Cities worldwide face many challenges, primarily climate change risks, urban population increase, and high resources use. The objective of this work is centered on revitalizing the abandoned factory of ex-Zanussi factory in the city of Conegliano, north of Venice Italy to be a city hub of sustainability. This paper present the attempt that was carried out to regenerate the old building to be green and sustainable site by utilizing urban farm technologies based on soilless solutions. Also, the retrofitted building and site aim at strengthening the capacity of the city of Conegliano economically, socially, and environmentally. The philosophy of planning and redesigning the site was centered on architectural and urban farming innovation. Many smart solutions were exploited onto the facades to turn this building and site into a live hub. The retrofitted building includes inspiring domes with revolving light wells to allow natural lighting of Conegliano and to reduce energy consumption, hence, mitigate CO2. Also, LED facades, ETFE cushions and rainwater harvesting as well as ZIP grow and recycled bricks. In addition, mobile application was used to enhance the learning experience, self-learning of urban farming, and what could be possibly done through the education facility. A business model, including the strategy, SWOT, operation cost, and a feasibility study were developed to best inform on the revenues from the project to reduce employment. Results indicate that by integrating agriculture with architecture using smart technologies could lead to economic growth, society integration, and achieve livability. Moreover, the diversity of users and mixed activities with nature are materialized. Finally, the project supports the city of Conegliano’s efforts in achieving successful interaction between technological and social innovation, and assists local governments in meeting Paris Agreement targets in Italy, yet attains SDGs, mainly SDG 7, 9, 11, 12, and 13.


Urban farming and circular production City’s revitalization and social innovation Climate change adaptation City of Conegliano, Italy 


  1. 1.
    United Nation Habitat, UN-Habitat—Energy, [Online], Retrieved May 1, 2019, from
  2. 2.
    The World Bank, PART III ‘Cities’ Contribution to Climate Change’, [Online] (p. 14), Retrieved May 1, 2019, from
  3. 3.
    World Energy Resourses (2016). World Energy Council; World-Energy-Resources_FullReport_2016.pdf. [Online], Retrieved May 1, 2019 from
  4. 4.
    Cities—United Nation Sustainable Development Action (2015). [Online], Retrieved May, 1, 2019 from
  5. 5.
    Resource Efficiency and Green Economy, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) [Online], Retrieved May 1, 2019, from
  6. 6.
    Urban Farm 2019, University of Bologna, Italy, Retrieved November 5, 2018, from
  7. 7.
    RUAF Foundation, [Online], Retrieved from
  8. 8.
    Steve Hallett Lori, Hoagland Lori, and Emily Toner, 2017, Urban agriculture: environmental, economic, and social perspectives, Horticultural Reviews, Volume 44, 1st Ed., Jules Janick, John Wiley & Sons, Inc, Hoboken, NJ. Retrieved May 1, 2019, from
  9. 9.
    Nogeire-McRae, T., et al. (2018). The role of urban agriculture in a secure, healthy, and sustainable food system. Bioscience, 68(10), 748–759., Retrieved May 1, 2019, from Scholar
  10. 10.
    FoodMetres-Urban-Organic-Waste-Management-in-The-Hague.pdf. Wageningen University, Academic Consultancy Training (2014) [Online]. Retrieved from
  11. 11.
    Sustainable agriculture and food production, GrEAT Green Education for Active Talents, INTELLECTUAL OUTPUT 2 TRAINING MODULES AND MATERIALS, GrEAT_IO2_SustainableAgricolture_FoodProduction.DEF_.pdf, [Online], Retrieved April 22, 2019, from
  12. 12.
  13. 13.
    Green Tokyo: 5 cool examples of urban agriculture—Pasona O2, Retrieved April 23, 2019, from
  14. 14.
    ‘South Korean Urban Farming on the Rise’, RclaimGrowSustain, [Online], Retrieved April 24, 2019, from
  15. 15.
    Seoul City Agriculture, Seoul Metropolitan Government, [Online], Retrieved April 28, 2019, from
  16. 16.
    Farming in the Sky in Singapore, United Nations University, SCIENCE and TECHNOLOGY: Food Security, Asia, Urban Development (2012) [Online], Retrieved April 23, 2019, from
  17. 17.
    10 Urban Agriculture Projects in Berlin, Germany, Foodtank (2014) [Online], Retrieved April 23, 2019, from
  18. 18.
    Vertical forest, BOERI, Stephano Boeri Architetti, [Online], Retrieved April 25, 2019, from
  19. 19.
    ACROS Fukuoka Prefectural International Hall, GREENROOFS.COM, [Online], Retrieved October, 2018, from
  20. 20.
    Urban farming growing in popularity, Korea Biz Wire, September 14, 2018, [Online], Retrieved April 30, 2019, from
  21. 21.
    Town of Conegliano, Italy, [Online], Retrieved January 9, 2019 from
  22. 22.
    UrbanFarm 2019 International Challenge [Online], Retrieved October 27, 2018, from
  23. 23.
    Retrieved January 6, 2019, from
  24. 24.
    Retrieved January 7, 2019, from
  25. 25.
  26. 26.
    Retrieved January 8, 2019, from
  27. 27.
    Retrieved January 8, 2019, from
  28. 28.
    Schiavon, M. (2010). Antiche varietá di Mele e Pere del Veneto. Legnaro: Veneto Agricoltura.Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Kenis, M., Tonina, L., Eschen, R., Van der Sluis, B., Sancassani, M., & Mori, N. H. (2016). Non-crop plants used as hosts by Drosophila suzukii in Europe. Journal of Pest Science, 89, 735–748.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Ioratti, C., Boselli, M., Caruso, S., Galassi, T., Grassi, A., Tonina, L., & Mori, N. (2015). Approccio Integrato per la difesa dalla Drosophila suzukii. Frutticoltura, 4, 6–10.Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Leach, H., Moses, J., Hanson, E., Fanning, P., & Isaac, R. (2018). Rapid harvest schedules and fruit removal as non-chemical approaches for managing spotted wing Drosophila. Journal of Pest Science, 91, 219–226.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Pimpini, F., Giannini, M., & Lazzarin, R. (1999). Ortaggi da foglia da taglio. Legnaro: Veneto Agricoltura.Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    AssoBirra, final report 2018.Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    Retrieved January 9, 2019, from
  35. 35.
    Retrieved January 9, 2019, from
  36. 36.
  37. 37.
    Andrej Gregori, M. S. (2008). The use of spent brewery grains for Pleurotus ostreatus cultivation and enzyme production. New Biotechnology, 25(2–3), 157–161.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Valentina Gobbi, C. N. (2015). Substrato di fungaia, efficace fertilizzante alternativo. L’Informatore agrario, 22.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Haidy Mousa
    • 1
  • May Elhadidi
    • 1
  • Hadil Abdelhafez
    • 1
  • Pietro Tonini
    • 2
  • Lorenzo Fellin
    • 2
  • Antonella Frongia
    • 2
  • Virginia Castellucci
    • 3
  • Mohsen Aboulnaga
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Engineering, Department of ArchitectureCairo UniversityCairoEgypt
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural Sciences and TechnologiesUniversity of BolognaBolognaItaly
  3. 3.Department of Economic and Business SciencesUniversity of TrentoTrentoItaly

Personalised recommendations