[Chron]

Pasadena council members voted unanimously in favor of a package of economic incentives that would pave the way for a modern, “indoor farm” to be built on the city’s north side.

City staffers hope the farm would help spur a food revival in the area, where residents have long had barriers to accessing healthy food.

Wayne Holt, who helps run the city website, is one of the architects of the plan that he calls a public- private partnership between the city and Houston-based company Indoor Harvest.

Indoor Harvest has also been seeking private investors for the project.

The facility, which would be located in an old police building, would use a unique process of circulating air to nourish plants grown indoors, according to preliminary plans.

Holt said eventually, students from San Jacinto College and the Pasadena Independent School District would learn how to work the farm, bolstering technical skills.

“I think this is going to be a great project and a bug boon for the north side,” said Cary Bass, who was the only council member to speak about the measure.

It would require another vote by the council to go into effect.

The economic incentives include a tax abatement for 20 years, city officials said, as well as leasing the property to indoor harvest for $10 a year.

Holt told council members the arrangement would be the “first of its kind in the country.”