In the summer of 2010, Chicago State University opened the Aquaponics Facility. The
project consists of raising tilapia fish in a controlled continuously circulating
water system. The effluent of the fish holding tanks are circulated through growbeds,
providing nourishment where plants will be grown hydroponically. This integrative
process between aquaculture and hydroponics is known as aquaponics.
The facility provides a hands-on learning environment supporting the development of
our Urban Agriculture/Ecology track option for CSU students. Benefitting those matriculating
at the university, area high school students, and the community at large, the Aquaponics
Center serves as a resource and training center addressing nutrition and health issues
facing inner city communities and green workforce preparedness.
Some of the plants you can find growing in the Aquaponics facility are basil, strawberries,
chives, mustard greens, and many more. The goal of the facility is to incorporate
the academic study of urban environmental sciences with community outreach/recruitment
to train future students and community members to grow nutritious food with a small
carbon foot print.
Starting in April 2011, the department will open a four acre Community Garden where
students, community gardeners and high school gardeners will grow nutritious foods
that will combat the existence of the "food desert." An area is considered a food
dessert when plenty of food high in caloric content and low in nutritional content
is available and healthy options are more difficult to obtain. By growing their own
food and donating to service organizations, gardeners learn the value of nutritious
food and how it impacts health.
*Note: CSU DOES NOT sell miniature aquaponics kits to schools, community groups, or
individuals. CSU CANNNOT sell fish to individuals.
For tour requests or more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com,
or call 773-437-3952