894 IDEAS FOR RESTORINGVIBRANCY IN CITIES ANDREGIONS FACING ECONOMICDECLINE
ForewordFall 2011, multinational Steelcase issued an OpenIDEO crowdsourcing challenge asking: ‘How might we restore vibran...
Vibrancy in a BoxThis featured concept represents a do-it-yourself way to get active in your community.Ideas and suggestio...
Create a Barter MarketUse an abandoned or vacant space to host a weekly barter market. Here, people canswap products and s...
Buy Locally, Connect LocallySo much of the money and resources people spend in a neighborhood ‘disappears’into the global ...
ZipSpacesBecause of economic decline, many cities and neighborhoods have a large number of(temporarily) abandoned offices ...
Decode the CodesComplicated zoning codes and city policies are often in the way of unfolding creativityand entrepreneurshi...
Attracting Start-UpsThe establishment of start-ups in a neighborhood or town offers many advantages tocities and municipal...
Rivalry!Using competitions, citizens and companies are encouraged to support the localeconomy. This concept will help keep...
Engage University Students in CommunityProjectsEngineering and design students could be involved in local projects to shar...
Reclaimed in DetroitThe city of Detroit is currently rightsizing and clearing away large numbers ofabandoned buildings. Th...
Dialog Booster ParkBy offering a stage in a park or other physical meeting place, people are encouraged tostart a dialog w...
OpencityA mobile application and website which can designate an area (using Google Maps, forexample) enables locals to sha...
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions
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894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions

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Steelcase and OpenIDEO consulted the wisdom of 'the crowd' for ideas on restoring vibrancy in cities and regions facing economic decline. No less than 894 inspiring, innovative ideas emerged from this crowdsourcing challenge. Between-us is happy to present the eleven winning concepts.

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894 ideas for restoring vibrancy in cities and regions

  1. 1. 894 IDEAS FOR RESTORINGVIBRANCY IN CITIES ANDREGIONS FACING ECONOMICDECLINE
  2. 2. ForewordFall 2011, multinational Steelcase issued an OpenIDEO crowdsourcing challenge asking: ‘How might we restore vibrancy in citiesand regions facing economic decline?’ They were motivated by the economic decline of Detroit, capital of Steelcase’sheadquarters home-state Michigan, United States.Ideas for revitalizing cities and regions were gathered in five phases. No less than 894 ideas were received during the inspirationphase, coming from all over the planet. 330 of these ideas were worked out to concrete concepts. From these concepts, Steelcaseand IDEO compiled a top 20-shortlist, based on the ‘applause’, the votes by the public, and by using evaluation criteria that werestated beforehand. From this shortlist, eleven were announced as ‘winning concept’, which all relate to one or more of thefollowing topics: Vacancy: The concept relates to vacant buildings or wasteland. Collaboration: The concept encourages collaboration between inhabitants, organizations and/or governments. Self-organization: The concept encourages that citizens themselves start working on the neighborhood, city or region. Community : The concept increases a feeling of connection in the community, realizes a higher degree of social cohesion. Entrepreneurship: The concept is encouraging for new and existing entrepreneurs and start-ups, and promotes the local economy.Between-us firmly believes that these ideas will bring inspiration to parties which are looking for innovative ways to revitalizecities and regions and is proud to present the eleven winning concepts to you in the following slides.En joy and become inspired!Between-uswww.between-us.com
  3. 3. Vibrancy in a BoxThis featured concept represents a do-it-yourself way to get active in your community.Ideas and suggestions for projects can be shared on a website. The only condition isthat the projects should be small and easy to implement by locals, and that anyonecan start them in their neighborhood, building or area. The platform will triggerexchange and collaboration in the community.Not just ideas, but also ready-made kits including printable materials, local chaptersper region, and youth programs, could be provided. This way, other participants canstart executing ideas in their community immediately. Local chapters could combineideas on a regional level. In addition, a youth page can be created, enabling childrenand youngsters to submit their ideas and guide projects as ‘youth mentor’.Idea by: Sarah Fathallah (Morocco)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community - entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/vibrancy-in-a-box/
  4. 4. Create a Barter MarketUse an abandoned or vacant space to host a weekly barter market. Here, people canswap products and services with neighbors. Inhabitants can exchange used andunused stuff, but also make their qualities available to each other. Examples arepainting a fence, giving guitar lessons, telling stories or exchanging artwork.A website could be added to the project, enabling people to connect and exchangeproducts and services. In both cases, no currency is allowed!The barter market can turn strangers into neighbors and friends, while instilling withinthem happiness and pride for being part of a community where this kind of friendlyexchange happens. It also re-enforces the idea that a community can support itselfthrough the collective power of its people.Idea by: Brian Redondo (US)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community - entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/instead-of-a-farmer-s-market-create-a-barter-market/
  5. 5. Buy Locally, Connect LocallySo much of the money and resources people spend in a neighborhood ‘disappears’into the global economy. Why not keep it local and inside the community?By doing local activities such as shopping for groceries, buying local products, andattending events, people collect points using a mobile application. This will encouragethem to spend money in their own community and enables physical and digitalconnections between inhabitants and entrepreneurs.Local businesses could reward purchases or action with special promotions, loyaltyprograms, or by sponsoring local initiatives financially or with resources. Neighbors areencouraged to think actively about lifestyle choices and will be rewarded for theirconscious behavior.Idea by: T. Annie Nguyen (US)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community - entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/buy-locally-connect-locally/
  6. 6. ZipSpacesBecause of economic decline, many cities and neighborhoods have a large number of(temporarily) abandoned offices and shop buildings.Abandoned, unused or temporarily vacant shops and office spaces could be rentedout temporarily againt low fees for short-term projects, such as cultural events,weddings, exhibitions and pop-up shops. The possibilities are endless, provided thatthe activities are in line with what the space is zoned for. A ZipSpaces website couldconnect the space owners and cultural entrepreneurs with each other. This way, theycan make reservations, provide feedback on each other, and exchange ideas.The ZipSpaces approach will attract creative entrepreneurs and start-ups to the region,who can realize initiatives using little capital. It also prevents the hazards of vacancy ofbuildings, rebrands the city and area, brings new foot-traffic to the neighborhood andcreates new business and boosts economic activity for the city.Idea by: Rebekah Emanuel (US)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community - entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/zipspaces/
  7. 7. Decode the CodesComplicated zoning codes and city policies are often in the way of unfolding creativityand entrepreneurship in (vacant) buildings. Simplifying complicated city andmunicipality codes in a user-friendly web manual should clear the way and make theroad towards innovative use of empty spaces by entrepreneurs and start-ups to a loteasier.Municipalities could release their policies in a simple, inviting fashion, for example byoffering an online step-by-step decision process for each area, which consequentlyexplains in clear language what the policy restrictions of the area include.By making the policy easier to understand and releasing it in a more simple way, citiesand municipalities could encourage entrepreneurship in their regions.Idea by: Mike McDearmon (US)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community - entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/decode-the-codes/
  8. 8. Attracting Start-UpsThe establishment of start-ups in a neighborhood or town offers many advantages tocities and municipalities: usage of vacant buildings, economic value because of thecreation of jobs, tax revenues and an increase of vitality in the neighborhood.By offering cheap real estate, giving out loans, not letting policies get in the way ofplans, and by providing other resources and guidance, cities and regions becomeattractive settling places for start-ups. These rewards could be offered bymunicipalities, but also by other sponsors such as social housing corporations, realestate administrators and local businesses. In short: all parties that benefit from theeconomic development of their region. An example of how they could be rewardedfor their support, is by issuing shares in the start-up companies.A Dutch example of the establishment of several creative start-ups in abandoned realestate, is Klein Haarlem (www.kleinhaarlem.nl).Idea by: Sarah Fathallah (Morocco)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community - entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/attracting-start-ups/
  9. 9. Rivalry!Using competitions, citizens and companies are encouraged to support the localeconomy. This concept will help keep small businesses competitive by increasingbusiness or fundraising hype, and will spark a more meaningful connection within thecommunity.Companies can challenge each other in a competition within a city, or betweendifferent cities. It is up to the community to decide who is ‘best’, by voting for theirfavorites. For example, imagine a challenge between two Italian restaurants. Winnerscould receive a small prize, provided by the municipality, local media or a sponsor. Inaddition, the competition element will stimulate both clients and employees of thecompanies involved. Competitions could be repeated annually to keep the game spiritalive.Idea by: Mei Hsieh (US)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community – entrepreneurship http://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/rivalry-a-competitive-challenge-network-to-spark-business-growth-and-city-spirit/
  10. 10. Engage University Students in CommunityProjectsEngineering and design students could be involved in local projects to share theirknowledge and skills with their local communities. Need to build a new playground atthe local park? Restoring a historical monument? Retrofitting your house to make itmore energy efficient and save utilities costs? Trying to figure out the best way tocapture rainwater for community garden irrigation? These types of problems can beturned into design projects built into university curriculum.The concept’s benefits are two-folded: students get to apply their knowledge in thereal world, the realization of their work enriches their education and will make thestudent proud if they are successful. On the other hand, the local community benefitsfrom the students’ skills, while the educational institute gets a chance to prove itssocial value to the city or region.Idea by : Amanda R. (US)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community - entrepreneurship http://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/engage-university-students-in-community-projects/
  11. 11. Reclaimed in DetroitThe city of Detroit is currently rightsizing and clearing away large numbers ofabandoned buildings. This leaves a blank canvas which offers opportunities to rebuildDetroit as a sustainable city. For example, wastelands could be used for ‘urbanfarming’ and left-over building materials could be recycled into furniture that carriesout the Motorcity spirit.Essentially, this concept represents the sustainable transition from threats toopportunities in the release of physical space. Reinforcing local identity of a city orregion is key and its substance will be reclaimed from decay.Idea by: Vincent Cheng (US)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community – entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/reclaimed-in-detroit/
  12. 12. Dialog Booster ParkBy offering a stage in a park or other physical meeting place, people are encouraged tostart a dialog with each other, to increase personal contact and to let peoplecollaborate to get new ideas for revitalization of the neighborhood or city.Fifteen locals are invited to participate in the ‘design team’. Team leaders provide thisteam with materials, rules, the division of roles, and inspiration.By letting locals come up with ideas themselves, a sense of ownership will emerge,increasing involvement and creating a more positive attitude towards change. Thedesign team will be appointed for a certain time. During this period, they will workaccording to the 4D-model (discover, dream, design, deliver) to realize change.Idea by: Jens Mortensen (Sweden)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community – entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/dialog-booster-park./
  13. 13. OpencityA mobile application and website which can designate an area (using Google Maps, forexample) enables locals to share ideas regarding abandoned buildings or wastelands.They could come to solutions in an off- and online collaboration. By gathering localengagement, the success rate of new initiatives will increase drastically.The concept consists of a four-step process:1. Someone initiates the process by tagging a space to be worked on, creating the space as digital project space. This can be done via the web, sms or through the mobile app.2. A physical object is then created on the space, so that people who live/work around the spot are made aware of the initiative and have the opportunity to offer their own ideas or help.3. A discussion is carried out through the online and physical elements and in person. Through this discussion, ideas are refined and people volunteer time, skills and materials on a mutually agreed project.4. Project is carried out and maintained.Idea by : Matthew Rouser (Sweden)Topics: vacancy - collaboration - self-organization - community – entrepreneurshiphttp://www.openideo.com/open/vibrant-cities/winners-announced/opencity-bringing-open-source-princi/
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