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May 16, 2014

Crowdfunding Helps to Renew Liverpool Bridge

Crowdfunding Helps to Renew Liverpool Bridge

A key focus of SEiSMiC is tackling urban challenges through social innovation. A terrific example of this arose in the UK this spring as activists in Liverpool used crowdfunding to spruce up a derelict flyover.

The campaigners raised GBP 40,000 through Spacehive, billed as the world's first civic crowdfunding website. The site is devoted to the collection of philanthropic pledges for projects dedicated to the public good.

A group called Friends of the Flyover set up the site with the hope of turning the old flyover into a neighbourhood attraction, similar to the Promenade Plant in Paris and other green spaces built on disused bridges.

As Kate Stewart, co-founder of Friends of the Flyover, remarked in Cities Today, "We are delighted that so many people have supported this idea and that we're now in a position to move forward with the next stage of The Flyover."

She continued: "The Spacehive campaign has captured the hearts and minds of many people locally and beyond and we are both humbled and excited about the next stage and our newly established responsibility to deliver what is now the vision of so many people."

The group raised GBP 40,800 from 360 people to turn the flyover into a promenade with space for art events, markets, cafes, shops and community gardening.

The campaign was set up by Stewart, an independent retailer; designer Steve Threlfall and architect Mark Bennet after the Liverpool City Council proposed the flyover's demolition at a cost of GBP 4 million.