Incubators of Public Spaces

Duration: 10/14 - 09/17

While participatory planning is widely hailed as a prerequisite for well-managed urban development, in practice this ideal can be difficult to implement. Incubators of Public Spaces, led by Politecnico di Torino, aims to expand the opportunities for civic engagement in urban design through the creation of a user friendly online platform.

By combining co-creative software and crowdfunding sources, the project provides a way to connect communities meaningfully with their physical environment, enabling contributors to navigate a 3-D virtual visualisation of local public spaces that they can remodel interactively. Then, through crowdfunding, participants can raise the necessary resources to make their vision a reality.

Once completed, the outputs will provide the general public with an accessible platform to explore the potential reshaping of their local areas and the possibility of delivering real change. The benefits will be felt through the revitalisation of urban environments into more democratic and participatory public spaces.

The UCL part of the work is being carried out by the Bartlett School of Planning (BSP) and the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA). This relates to governance aspects of participatory urban design and placemaking, and linking the Incubators software platform to a London case study.

Project Webpage

Stephen Marshall (Principal Investigator, Reader in Urban Morphology and Planning)
Andrew Hudson-Smith (Reader in Digital Urban Systems)
Nikolaos Karadimitriou (Senior Lecturer)

Development of an integrated, user friendly online tool incorporating 3-D visualisation, e-participation and crowdfunding to support participatory urban design.

Improved engagement between communities, local authorities, businesses and other stakeholders through shared use of the software, resulting in more democratic place-making.