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Our very own Dill Pickle Food Coop in Logan Square was named first runner up for best local grocer in the Chicago Reader’s annual ‘Best Of’ Edition.  Flashback to our dreaming about a coop in Chicago here, its design here, and opening here.

We have an unused driveway in front of our office that only gets used occasionally to load and unload materials.  It is pretty useless.  After recent water main work under our street the City even repoured the driveway that they tore up to install a new sidewalk ramp.

As part of our reclamation of the urban right-of-way project we have installed a raised planter bed, designed and built by moss with 100% reclaimed framing lumber from the Rebuilding Exchange.  Now flourishing are tomatoes, basil, oregano, thyme, brussels sprouts, strawberries, and sage.  Construction and current photos after the break. Read the rest of this entry »

zen sushiResurrected from an existing Chinese restaurant, Zen Sushi will soon has opened its doors at 714 West Diversey Parkway in Lincoln Park.  We have created three distinct dining zones in the space that are all connected by sustainable building materials and energy efficient lighting.  All wood wall and ceiling finishes have been reclaimed from a Western Illinois barn.  The existing floors have been finished with a low-VOC stain from TimberSoy and the walls with no-VOC paint.  All new lighting have LED or compact fluorescent lamps and will save energy as compared to conventional fixtures.  See all the photos (including before images) after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

radioLaura and I will be interviewed tomorrow, Saturday, October 24 at 10:20a-11:20a to discuss our Dill Pickle Food Coop project on Vocalo Public Radio, 89.5FM in Chicago.  You can catch it on the airwaves at 89.5FM in Chicago or online at vocalo.orgWe will post the audio to our site if you miss it. Here is the audio (skip ahead to 35:05)

dplogoWe are closing in on completion of the Dill Pickle Food Coop.  Drywall has been hung, ductwork is in, reclaimed glass doors are installed, and painting to be completed this week.  Storefront window and door are scheduled for delivery next week.  Latest photos after the jump.  New to moss’ food initiative?  Read more here and here.

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PPlot03We have been enjoying the bounty of our CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share this summer and thought it was time to toil the land with Todd and Julia, our farmers at Peasant’s Plot.  We have been threatening Todd every week at the Lincoln Square farmers’ market, that we would join him for a break-breaking day of farm labor.  The day was upon us, let’s farm.

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potatoIn addition to the native perennials planted in the front yard of moss headquarters we have undertaken growing a potato patch.  These plant-like stalks were started from the extracted eyes of organic fingerling potatoes.  To start, the eyes were covered in about an inch of soil and them covered with more soil whenever their tendrils poked above the soil until they flowered.  The rain and warm weather of the past week has made the plants shoot out of the container.  Photos after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

food deliveryAnother piece of the design world that needs better exploration is the food system.  Outside influences have contributed to the dereliction of our food delivery system, probably best explained here and here.  However, how to fix that system is oft described as a repair of the metaphorical link between people and their food.  My common frustration is the lack of design intervention in the conversation.  There is no reason why everything we build, inhabit, etc does not have an edible component. Read the rest of this entry »

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