Cultivating urban farms for community growth, a group of children posing for a photo in Bridge Park.

Bridge Park Plots

The Bridge Park Plots, a network of six local urban farms and gardens supported by the 11th Street Bridge Park, grow and distribute organic fruits, vegetables and herbs to families East of the Anacostia River.

A man kneeling down in a garden, building bridges across the river.

The Bridge Park Plots also host regular volunteer opportunities and educational workshops for community residents!

THEARC Farm, EST. 2010

1901 Mississippi Ave SE, Washington, DC  

THEARC Farm is the anchor site of the Building Bridges Farms network.  The farm was built in 2010, when Building Bridges staff added 21 raised beds alongside Oxon Creek. The project farm was to encourage healthy nutrition in the community and utilize green space in a positive way. Kale, chard, lettuces, garlic, tomatoes, mint and basil were just a few of the vegetables planted that first season.  Within five years, THEARC Farm expanded to include 22 raised beds, an 18-tree orchard, a season-extending hoop house, three community compost bins, four in-ground rows, medicinal & culinary herb gardens and a bee hive!

More than 10 years later, the small garden has fully evolved into an urban farm – one of the largest of its kind east of the river.  The raised beds have given way to a second hoop house; the number of in-ground rows has quadrupled; the orchard has nearly doubled in size, its fruit trees pollinated by bees from not just one but three honey-producing hives.

The Bridge Park Plots are a network of farms and gardens surrounding the future 11th Street Bridge Park. The project started after 1000+ meetings with community residents who repeatedly expressed the desire for urban agriculture and inclusive green spaces to accompany the Bridge construction.  Starting in Spring of 2016 each site was built in partnership with a faith community, early childhood learning center or public housing community at the request of community leadership.

The creation and sustained engagement with these farms and gardens is just one example of the community-based work outlined in the 11th Street Bridge Park’s Equitable Development Plan.

Bridge Park Plots

A group of people in Bridge Park Plots, cultivating urban farms and gardens, talking to each other for community growth.

Nsilo Oure Urban Farm, EST. Spring 2016 | Union Temple Baptist Church,  1225 W St SE, Washington, DC  |  The UT Nsilo Oure Urban Farm is a hands-on opportunity for Union Temple members and the surrounding community to learn the art and science of urban agriculture. Nsilo Oure Urban Farm is named in memoriam after one of the garden’s founders.

Babies Gardening

NCC Baby Bloomers’ Farm & Orchard, EST. Summer 2017 | The National Children’s Center, 3400 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC | National Children’s Center, Inc. (NCC) is a 501©3 non-profit organization that is one of the region’s largest non-governmental providers of services for the developmentally disabled, offering an array of services to infants, children and adults in the Washington metropolitan area. Their ward 8 site, primarily an Early Learning Center, is home to our second largest plot in the Bridge Park network with 65 beds and 14 fruit trees. 

A little girl painting on a large canvas at Bridge Park Plots, cultivating urban farms and gardens for community growth.

Hopkins Garden & Orchard, EST. Spring 2018 | Hopkins Housing Complex, 1430 L St SE, Washington, DC | This is our newest Bridge Park Plot and the third largest with 40 beds and 20 fruit trees. Currently, Hopkins Garden has a Little Library available for residents to sit and read and will also be the site of our largest bee and butterfly garden in 2020!

A backyard with a raised garden bed in Bridge Park Plots, cultivating urban farms & gardens for community growth.

Garden of Eden, EST. Summer 2017 | Allen Chapel AME Church, 2498  Alabama  Ave  SE,  Washington,  DC  |  This site comprises 15 raised beds and 14 fruit trees. The Garden of Eden, its name inspired by the Biblical story of Adam and Eve, strives to embody paradise as described in the Bible. The gardeners of Eden grow flowers, fruits and vegetables, but focus more on growing herbs and medicinal plants both to provide seasonings to go along with the food shared through Allen Chapel Food Pantry, and in an effort to provide herbal products to support healing from common conditions plaguing the surrounding community.

A group of people cultivating plots in Bridge Park for an urban garden within a stadium.

Nationals Baseball Stadium | Cultivate the City ( plants and maintains this garden on the roof of a concession stand inside the ballpark.  There are 1400 milk crates each with a bag of about a cubic foot of soil.