For those who will be fortunate enough to reside in a
brand-new community being erected in a suburb of
Amsterdam, the future of sustainable suburban
communities looks bright. Residents may find that
their dining room is adjacent to an indoor vegetable
garden, while just outside the window rests a seasonal
garden. They will also find that all the food for this
community is being grown just down the road in
vertical farms, using the latest inventions of the
This neighborhood isn’t part of some sci-fi fiction, it
has a name; the first ever ReGen Village. Engineers
have designed this community to be entirely
self-sufficient and sustainable. The village will grow
food for residents, produce all the energy requirements
for the village, and dispose of all waste on site in a
closed loop community.
All conventional household waste products that can
be composted will be used to provide food for
livestock as well as soldier flies. The flies will then
be used to feed fish, while fish waste is used to provide
fertilizer for an on-site aquaculture system that grows
fruits and vegetables for the village residents. Seasonal
outdoor gardens will receive fertilizer from the waste
produced by livestock.
Image Source: http://inhabitat.com
Implementing the most innovative technologies for
producing food—a combination of high yield vertical
farms, food forests, aquaponics, aeroponics, and
permaculture—this village will produce several times
the food of a traditional land farm of the same
dimensions, with far fewer natural resources. For
example, aquaponics can produce 10 times as much
food as would be grown on the same acreage of land,
while simultaneously reducing water consumption by
The Awesome Daily: “We anticipate literally tonnes
of abundant organic food every year—from vegetables,
fruit, nuts, legumes, fish, eggs, chicken, small animal
dairy and protein—that can continually grow and
yield in the vertical garden systems all year long.”
says James Ehrlich, CEO of ReGen Villages.
In addition to producing its own food and disposing of
waste, the village will produce all its own energy needs.
This will be done using a combination of wind, solar,
geothermal, and biomass.
Wonderful Engineering: “We’re looking at some very
interesting technologies for small-footprint biomass
that can take surrounding farm waste and turn that
into a consistent energy source in a way that can power
these communities in northern Europe even in the dead
of winter,” Ehrlich says.
Incorporating smart grid technologies, power will be
distributed efficiently. All household waste not able to
be composted will be disposed of in a biogas plant
which will convert the waste into water and/or power.
Water storage systems will collect and contain both
rainwater and gray water, which it will distribute to
the aquaponic systems and seasonal gardens of those
living in the village.
This ReGen community will be the first in a network
of similar villages the company has plans to build all
over the world.
Organic & Healthy: “We’re really looking at a global
scale,” he says. “We are redefining residential real-estate
development by creating these regenerative
neighborhoods, looking at first these greenfield pieces
of farmland where we can produce more organic food,
more clean water, more clean energy, and mitigate
more waste than if we just left that land to grow organic
food or do permaculture there.”
Plans for the first 100-home sustainable community
broke ground this past summer and looks to be completed
sometime in 2017. This initial village will be set outside
the town of Almere, roughly 20 minutes from Amsterdam
by train. After this community, the company has short
term plans for projects in Denmark, Germany, Sweden
and Norway, and long term plans to break ground in the
The ReGen community in Almere will produce roughly
half of the food required for the residents of the village;
some things will not be grown, such as coffee and
bananas for example. It will however produce enough
energy to feed back into the grid locally. In future
locations, the company is confident that the villages will
be completely self-sufficient.