The Urban Land Institute reports that there are over 200 agrihoods in the USA and that their number is growing. You can view several videos at our hub page for Regenerative Agriculture, Homesteading and Gardening.
While farm based communities are being done, but not nearly as effectively as they could be done. We point to the following resources where we have learned much more:
The best guide to what is and isn’t working is from The Liberty Prairie Foundation.
The first lesson is that you want to design the farm before the village. The second lesson is harder. They tried giving the farm to a farmer, only to find the farmer had different priorities and jobs when it came time to help the developer sell homes “Hey, sorry but it is 10 am on a Saturday and I have to be at the farmer’s market selling my produce!”. The alternative is to hire a farm manager, but too many developers found out that the managers can get higher pay at inconvenient times, like just before planting season, leaving the developer with a big mess of weeds to clean up if he doesn’t make the farm a priority. Neither of those options has made for a good agrihood platform.
The New Grand Strategy was written based on the research of The Pentagon in 2009. Their charge was to write not a military formula but a grand strategy for America. Two military officers reporting directly to Admiral Mike Mullen, came up with ‘Walkable Communities inside Regenerative Agriculture farms”.
When we talked to the authors, it was their claim that they have not yet met anyone who could design and run the farm.
This is how communities have developed for millennia, walkable communities inside hunting lands or forests, depending on the eco-region.
You can also check out the National Level Support page to see the many resources being directed at developers, yet very few projects incorporate all of this very well researched technical support to developers.
Our contention is that the conventional developer model is missing a crucial element, that of the steward. When a developer builds the last house, he has exited the project and is on to the next. The industry needs a more holistic design that partners the steward with the homeowners and aligns their interests with that of the long term environment. That is what Citadels does.