The Challenge

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How might we inspire and enable communities to take more initiative in making their local environments better? read the brief

Contribution

Creative Space, Christchurch, NZ

Gap Filler aims to temporarily activate vacant sites within Christchurch with creative projects for community benefit, to make for a more interesting, dynamic and vibrant city.

"Gap Filler is a creative urban regeneration initiative started in response to the September 4, 2010 Canterbury earthquake, and revised and expanded in light of the more destructive February 22, 2011 quake. It is now administered by the Gap Filler Charitable Trust.

Gap Filler aims to temporarily activate vacant sites within Christchurch with creative projects for community benefit, to make for a more interesting, dynamic and vibrant city.

Christchurch needs our help! There are wonderful ideas for the future city, but that’s a long way off and many people need reasons to stay now. Gap Filler gives everyday people a way to contribute to the city’s regeneration instead of passively waiting for the professionals to do the job.

Community Engagement: We believe in encouraging and promoting community spirit, growth and awareness by assisting people to experience and participate in artistic projects. We believe that vacant land and buildings present opportunities; through developing and investing in gap sites, communities will recognise the value of social/cultural activities and communal endeavour in building social capital and resilience, stimulating economic development and creating connectedness. We feel that ‘community spirit’ is necessarily related to the idea of ‘the public good’: communities are strongest when working for public benefit, social capital and a flourishing environment."

http://www.gapfiller.org.nz/


Does a designated space and some help at following through with an idea make it easier for people to express and take their idea to the next level?

I also find this interesting as it is an initiative created around a tragedy the entire population of Christchurch has suffered from. Uniting around a common cause. And doing so with creativity. What could Singaporeans unite around?

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Comments

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OpenIDEO

November 07, 2012, 20:40PM
Congrats on this post being today's onsite Featured Inspiration!

Klementyna Jankiewicz

November 07, 2012, 09:31AM
Interesting! One of the things I like about Gap Filler is temporariness of their projects. There are so many places in todays cities (not only the ones that faced some kind of a disaster) that for years stay empty because their owners wait for building permissions etc. This gives people a chance to use those places and the owner knows that they'll vacant it the moment he needs it.

Maria Malcus

November 07, 2012, 12:39PM
I completely agree! Check this out http://emptyspaces.culturemap.org.au/
I like the idea of looking at voids in a city as white canvas. If we start seeing it that way, will it encourage people to fill them instead of avoiding them? Is it possible to change our view of the empty space?

Klementyna Jankiewicz

November 07, 2012, 15:05PM
nice! I like what they write to landlords that have an empty property or land. Except obvious social and cultural benefits for the local community, it can also raise the property value, save it from vandalism. Everyone can benefit.

Meena Kadri

November 06, 2012, 20:17PM
Gota love those savvy New Zealanders! ;^)

Ashley Jablow

November 06, 2012, 18:11PM
Nice questioning about communities uniting around a common cause! It's interesting how some community needs are universal, and yet many are also very place-specific. Any Singaporeans out there want to weigh in?
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