GOOD Ideas for Cities


Funding Received: 2011
Multiple, Multiple
Funding Period: 1 year and 5 months
July 10, 2012

GOOD Ideas for Cities paid a visit to another American city in June, this time stopping in Dallas, Texas to pair three teams of local creatives with three city challenges presented by urban leaders. About 250 attendees braved a wicked hailstorm to gather at the cozy Lakewood Theater for the evening event, which featured solutions ranging from transforming transit stations into economic opportunities, to activating a neighborhood's small businesses, to changing the way Dallas residents interact with their urban hiking and biking trails. Huge thanks to AIGA DFW for all their on-the-ground help and support. As always, videos of all the presentations, will be posted at the GOOD Ideas for Cities site.

This month, GOOD Ideas for Cities heads to New Orleans for its final city, where it will be partnering with the new civic engagement startup Neighborland. New Orleans will be an especially interesting city to follow as the four creative teams were each recipients of $500 microgrants from Neighborland, which were doled out at the beginning of their challenge process. The teams have already been able to launch some real-life, on-the-ground interventions. You can read more about the creative process of one team, focused on bringing healthy eating habits to the city, over at Neighborland's blog. To find out more about what happens in New Orleans, and all GOOD Ideas for Cities' cities, follow along at or on Twitter at @IdeasforCities.

This month, ArtPlace asked Alissa Walker, the editor of GOOD Ideas for Cities, a fitting question as the event series draws to a close: What will be different in your community as a result of your work?

"Our project is definitely different from the other ArtPlace grantees in that instead of focusing on one physical place, we've been able to ignite multiple nodes of change in communities across the country. I've mentioned before a few of the projects which are still in motion, like the hackathon for Portland's public schools that came out of a solution by Wieden + Kennedy at that city's event. But we're also seeing some incredible physical changes to cities, like in St. Louis, where the Brain Drain team is working closely with several partners in the city to bring their CityPulse concept to life as a citywide network of social media-enabled beacons.

We've also noticed something else that will be different in each of the communities we've worked with. We've been conducting surveys with each of our local partners and we keep hearing the same thing after each event:  GOOD Ideas for Cities got people and groups who rarely communicate with each other to work together on common issues. At each of these events, we manage to get the right people in the room, and encourage them to start a dialogue that lasts long after the event ends. And because we're working on a national scale, we're also able to connect groups in different cities that are facing common challenges. In a way, we're like a civic-minded dating service—and we love playing matchmaker!"