New hospital features urban farm on top of building

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The new Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital has plenty of state of the art features, but most unique can be found on the roof. The $754 million facility features a sky farm above the seven-story clinic building.

The hospital will use the space to grow fresh food. The fruits and vegetables will then be used in the cafeteria. Garlic is already in the ground but other plants won’t go in until spring.

“We are just now starting to plant our first crops. Our goal is that within a couple of years every space here will be growing food that we will be able to serve in the cafeteria, it will take time,” said Dr. Lisa Harris, CEO and Medical Director for Eskenazi Health.

Harris hopes the sky farm will be a therapeutic place for patients and staff. The hospital even plans to hold gardening classes for patients. Staff will have their own plots they can tend to.

The new hospital will host a public dedication and ribbon cutting this Saturday, Nov. 16, and the public is invited to tour the facility from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event will be held three weeks before patients and staff make the move from Wishard Memorial Hospital to the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Health Campus.  The hospital officially opens December 7.

The third annual 5K Eskenazi Health Stride and 1 mile race will also be held this Saturday. Participants can register for the 5k and walk by going to the Eskenazi Health Stride website.