As big proponents of participatory planning, we’re always excited to see new tools for engaging people in the decisions that affect their lives. Spacehive does just that by crowdsourcing ideas and funds for neighbourhood planning projects. It originated in London and so far only includes projects in the UK. But having already generated creative ideas for community gardens, public art, places for sport and play, among others, this demonstrates an interesting option for micro-scale community-drive change, that can happen anywhere.
Operating on a platform similar to Kickstarter, Spacehive lets users develop and showcase project ideas and raise funds for implementation. Multi-media functionality and social media links make it easy to raise awareness and support. Funders can pledge as little or as much as they like and, similar to Kickstarter, the pledge is only cashed in once the total fundraising goal is achieved.
This isn’t the only platform of its kind. In fact, it shares a lot of similarities with TED prize-winning The City 2.0 that we posted about a couple of months ago. So far, there hasn’t been much action there, as far as Vancouver goes at least. But it will be interesting to track these tools over time to see if momentum builds.