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Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics offering $25k in grants for creative civic projects

Through a grant from the Knight Foundation, the MONUM and the Mayor's Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy has $25,000 to back roughly seven civic-focused art projects, it announced yesterday. Grants will range from $2,000 to $7,000.

Race Street Pier, one example of an innovative public space. Photo from VisitPhilly.com.
Updated 6/6/13 2:44: An earlier version of this article stated incorrectly that the information session was on July 12. It is on June 12. Also, updated to provide more clarity on what kinds of projects should apply.

If you have an idea for how to change communities through art and design, The Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics (MONUM) wants to hear about it.

Through a grant from the Knight Foundation, the MONUM and the Mayor’s Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy has $25,000 to back roughly seven creative civic projects, it announced yesterday. Grants will range from $2,000 to $7,000.

Apply here by July 3.

What exactly is a “creative civic project”? Here’s MONUM co-director Jeff Friedman on what he’s looking for: “We’re not really going for art installations, but prototypes that improve the civic space by incorporating art, design and functionality.”

There’s an info session about the grant on June 12 in Conference Room B at the Municipal Services Building (1401 JFK Blvd.) from 1 p.m. – 2 p.m.

The challenge is using Change By Us, the tool built by 2011 Code for America fellows, as its main platform. It seems like a move to reinvigorate the tool, which provides a place for Philadelphians to suggest and plan civic projects but didn’t gain much traction in the city. Change by Us currently has 64 projects on the site but those numbers will likely rise, since eligible projects for the MONUM grants must be on Change By Us and have 10 members registered as part of the project.

Companies: City of Philadelphia / Knight Foundation / Office of Arts Culture and the Creative Economy

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