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Community Engines


© Toestand, 2020

Strengthening the social fabric.

How do we organise social hubs and havens for casual encounters and collective action at the heart of our neighbourhoods? How can we use a community’s social capital to afford urban fabric a new dynamism?

Display Case

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Social capital is everywhere! It comes down to detecting the most refreshing and most innovative initiatives, and bringing them together. The knowledge and know-how in the field is our most valuable resource. Together, we can achieve new breakthroughs. A motor in each neighbourhood!

Action plan

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Many citizens' initiatives are already making efforts to create places in their neighbourhood that strengthen the social fabric. How do we ensure that these district motors have a sustainable impact on future urban renewal projects?

Discover the map with all the Building Blocks

Building blocks

Allee du Kaai in the spotlight, 2020
Allee du Kaai in the spotlight, 2020
© Toestand, 2020

Toestand - Allee Du Kaai

In 2022, a new park will be created on the Materialenkaai opposite Tour & Taxis in the Brussels Canal Zone. Allée du Kaai was created in 2014 as a temporary project in anticipation of the redevelopment of this zone. At the request of Brussels Environment, Toestand vzw is focusing on the development of a social dynamic in the district as a stepping stone towards the future permanent redevelopment of the site.
Blikfabriek in the spotlight
Blikfabriek in the spotlight

Blikfabriek

The Blikfabriek is emerging as a socio-cultural meeting place, local breeding ground and creative incubator in the twilight zone between a new part of the city and the existing working-class neighbourhoods in Hoboken, Antwerp. The transformation of the former industrial site has been underway since 2018, via a temporary purpose offering space for innovative practices, neighbourhood initiatives, culture, sport and greenery.

Campus Atelier

Campus Atelier is an open cooperative design atelier in the Nieuw Gent district. Together with local residents, schoolchildren, neighbourhood organisations and passers-by, the initiators of Campus Atelier go in search of public space in an urban fabric struggling with privatisation, commercialisation, segregation and gentrification. They 'find' that public space and afford it (temporary) meaning by transforming empty buildings into collaborative workplaces, by rethinking existing (semi-)public spaces, and especially by crossing current urban boundaries.
Parckfarm
Parckfarm

Parckfarm

With Parckfarm, a new typology of public space is taking shape in the former abandoned railway valley behind Tour & Taxis - now a fully-fledged city park. It combines the characteristics of a 'lived' or convivial city park with local micro-urban farming. Together with local residents, artists, farmers and designers, the initiators of Parckfarm want to reclaim the green public space for residents as an urban commons. The initiators of Parckfarm vzw aim to exert a sustainable impact on the strategic development of the site.
Art Basics for Children
Art Basics for Children
© Ilse Liekens

ART BASICS FOR CHILDREN

Art Basics for Children (ABC) vzw is positioned at the interface between art and education. It is a laboratory for aesthetic experience and artistic awareness and creative development. The ABC House in Schaarbeek is an open and dynamic research centre focusing on art, culture and education, intended for school classes, families, trainee teachers, supervisors of youth workshops, employees of museums and libraries, both from the neighbourhood and the wider surroundings.
Buurtkeuken (Neighbourhood Kitchen) partners
Buurtkeuken (Neighbourhood Kitchen) partners

Neighbourhood Kitchens

The Buurtkeukens citizen movement advocates for a fair, sustainable and healthy food system. The Buurtkeukens movement guides and brings together groups of citizens who make a concerted effort to prepare daily meals for themselves and their entourage, with or without the help of established organisations. Buurtkeukens aims to create spaces where people can live side-by-side once more.

Readings


Publication
Policy Analysis and Recommendations
Marjolein Cremer (Senior Advocacy Officer, European Cultural Foundation), Maria Francesca De Tullio (Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Antwerp), Pascal Gielen (Professor of Sociology of Culture & Politics, University of Antwerp), Violante Torre (Policy Officer, European Cultural Foundation)
European Cultural Foundation, Creative Industry Košice

Publication
Verkenning naar multifunctioneel ruimtegebruik. 22 gemeenschapscentra in Brussel
Els Vervloesem, Nik Naudts, Anna Gherardi, Jasmien Wouters, Heleen Verheyden, Filip Canfyn, Marleen Goethals
Architecture Workroom Brussels, Rebel, UAntwerpen

Publication
A journey through temporary use
Emma Tytgadt
URBACT, European Regional Development Fund, The REFILL network, Stad Gent