The suburban community of Ford Heights finds itself in a food desert, defined as areas where residents cannot walk or take public transportation to buy affordable food. As an experiment to try and alleviate this issue, Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) has converted one unit in a local public housing complex into a grocery store. ,Run by Crisp Fresh Market, a for-profit arm of Catholic Charities, the grocery store opened on Wednesday in partnership with the CHA.
While tiny, the 600-square-foot store aims to pack a punch, and hopefully become one of many tools to address the shortage of affordable grocery stores in many Chicago neighborhoods. In addition to offering fresh produce, cereal, condiments, canned foods, and cleaning items, it also offers $10.39 per hour jobs to public housing residents, resulting in a work-play-live scenario for workers. If successful, this pilot project could scale to other communities in need.
· Public Housing Unit-Turned Grocery Store Hopes To Fix Food Desert Issue [Chicagoist]
· All Food Desert Coverage [Curbed Chicago]