The Lower Makefield Board of Supervisors voted unanimously at its June meeting to terminate its lease agreement with the New York-based company BrightFarms, which had grown vegetables and fruits in a 50,000-plus square-foot facility in Bucks County for nearly a decade. The township entered into a 10-year lease agreement with BrightFarms in 2012 to erect a hydroponic greenhouse on two acres of the sprawling Patterson Farm off of Stony Hill Road.
Under the lease agreement, BrightFarms has been paying the township $25,000 a year plus the rate of inflation. It had also been paying for utilities for its facility. After breaking ground on the greenhouse in 2012, BrightFarms began growing fresh produce for local supermarkets, including McCaffrey’s Market, and for restaurants in Philadelphia.
Now, supervisors want to get rid of the greenhouse.
“I, too, look forward to getting this over and done with,” said Supervisor Dan Grenier. “As we remove this facility from this great farmland that we have and bring it back to what it was, we have to have oversight to make sure they are doing what they committed to and at some point, when the process is done, it can be brought back to a farming use and we will be done with the development at the Patterson Farm and move forward in a positive light.”
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