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Thread: Public participation and financing website

  1. #1
    Cyburbian
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    Public participation and financing website

    I saw this and thought it was a genius idea it looks pretty small thus far, but I think it is looks like a good way for a developer to get some public support for their project, potentally some ideas for commerical business. . . and I noticed on the bottom of the website a link to a new offshoot called fundrise, which looks like an opportunity for individuals to buy equity stakes in local businesses.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Mud Princess's avatar
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    Interesting. It's like Kickstarter with a community development bent.

    I like the idea, but there are only 3 cities on it so far. I'm not sure how these were selected.

  3. #3
    OH....IO Hink's avatar
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    I love the concept, but it would have to get pretty large to actually be helpful. Ideas only work when you have a large audience. Otherwise you are really working in the same vacuum that you would normally.

    I think the more it gets out there, once a couple projects get built based on the ideas presents, and the more case studies they have, the more popular it will get.
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Mud Princess's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Hink View post

    I think the more it gets out there, once a couple projects get built based on the ideas presents, and the more case studies they have, the more popular it will get.
    In other words, the more popular it gets... the more popular it gets.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian
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    Well D.C. got picked because the people setting it up are from there. . . I have no idea how they picked OKC or Seattle, but I do have to say that there is a lot of development in Seattle (at least compared to some other places) and while there are plenty of NIMBY and no change advocates there is also some support for increased density and redevelopment. I haven't been in OKC since I was a kid, so I can't comment on that one.

    But, yes, I think that this would need to get a bigger audience to be a real hit - but there doesn't seem to be anything keeping them from building said audience. It is the sort of project that I wish I thought of first.

    I guess, the only issue would be, is is there enough of an incentive for a developer to participate. As a low income housing developer - I would prefer not to make too many waves if possible unless I already knew there was a ton of support for the project. That being said, if the forum could help reduce time that it takes to communicate with a large number of people it could be very worthwhile.

  6. #6
    It's an innovative concept, but could use further refinement. On a side note, the website is unfocused IMHO as they're trying to implement several different ideas. I got lost navigating the website and lost interest.

  7. #7
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    I almost think this would work best as a community involvement arm of the planning department for various Citys and local agencies. If you get a few city governments to buy into the concept, then their outreach starts to focus on using the website to get public input on all sorts of development projects.

    When I thumbed through the website I definitely saw its need for a 'critical mass' to become popular. Similar to how teacherreview.com started in Illinois and became quite popular at each University as they began to hit critical mass.

    In my experience people get involved when the barrier to entry on involvement is lowered. Instead of having to get off their couch and go to 10 different outreach meetings on 10 different projects on 10 different days spread out across 3-4 weeks, that gets taxing on the schedule. However, if they could sit at home one evening and browse through all the proposed new developments in their area and comment on each, that is a model that might work. I'm not a big fan of armchair coaches, but sadly that is the direction 'involvement' is headed.

    My 2 cents.

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