Who is welcome to participate in community-innovation?
Everybody is welcome to come and learn and start practicing a sustainable and enriching, healthy lifestyle.
Every organisation is welcome to propose (elements of) sustainable, innovative solutions that we can implement together.
Every community (neighbourhood, district, village, city,...) benefits from having a central place where stakeholders can meet and work out creative ideas.
Many different projects can be set up, some of which will be successful, and some of which will not. But even then, we will have learned something and this experience can be passed on to other communities.
By organising as a network of innovative communities (e.g. in the smart circular city network), we can also share best practices, multiplying success stories, while saving time and money.
The support from local government
It is always good to have your work supported by a local government.
Local administrations have experience in running communities, mobilising and processing resources.
Community-Innovation groups can give positive impulses to improve situations, regardless of politics.
Many solutions can be implemented together, and some financial support can be made available to set up new projects.
The TEALcenter project in Antwerp has received support from administrations on 3 levels:
- designing and building the largely circular, modular and scalable community building (prototype) was partly subsidised by the Flemish government under the Vlaanderen Circulair program, administered by OVAM. (see also www.tealcenter.org)
- one of the partners providing quality input was the building innovation center of the Province of Antwerp: Kamp C.
- StadsLab 2050 and its Sustainable City Antwerp program also provided a subsidy and helped find a district that wanted to help pioneer our innovative approach.
Two Antwerp districts reacted positively: Deurne and Borgerhout. After some exchanges and scouting, district mayor of Borgerhout Marij Preneel and her team proposed to have the TEALcenter built next to 't Werkhuys, a low threshold meeting place where people can already follow many courses and attend cultural events. Owned by Vespa AG, the real estate department of the City of Antwerp, the adjacent land until recently formed a part of a construction site and was then used for wild parking, quickly deteriorating its state. Recently the city district placed some planters with flowers to stop the cars and vans from parking there.
A versatile meeting place
If the local government can not offer a convenient meeting space for stakeholder driven innovation, communities now have the possibility to quickly create their own.
TEALcenters are largely built with inexpensive, recuperated materials; they are modular and scalable. The standard surface of this versatile community center is 116 m2, but they can be scaled up to 4.000 m2 using modular elements.
Best of all, setting up a standard TEALcenter typically is done in a day or 2, and because it uses the technology that is used for temporary constructions (ref. Tomorrowland, Jazz Middelheim and other festivals) requires no housing permit; just a permission for a temporary construction, to be negotiated with the local authority.
Important to note is that technically the TEALcenter falls under 'tents' (be it with light, wooden walls). It is placed on top of the land without foundation, and its strong aluminum structure and safety glass windows qualify for the highest safety standards.
It can be heated with solar energy powered infrared heating, amongst other solutions. Rain water can be collected from its roofs to use in a community garden.
TEALcenters can be purchased for as little as 75.000 €, and it will also be possible to rent them.
Community-Innovation can only occur as a partnership project. It is important to involve as many local citizens as possible, as it is their community. Using a framework of desirable changes we use a priorities list to come up with solutions that we can contribute to the community.
When expertise is not available locally, other parties can be invited to cooperate.
Made with Love Projects, the small foundation that is spearheading the TEALcenter project, wishes to acknowledge the contributions of the following people and organisations:
- AG Vespa
- Be Bamboo
- Be Planet!
- City of Antwerp, District Borgerhout
- Els Van Reeth
- Francesco Mazzoni and Kris Vandeperre
- GECO Concept
- Hugo Vanderstadt
- Jan Larosse
- Kamp C
- Komosie vzw
- StadsLab 2050
- Transitie Vlaanderen
- Vlaanderen Circulair
- We Go Circular (www.wegocircular.eu)
- Wolf Jordan
We invite you to join forces and start implementing innovative solutions that benefit communities throughout Flanders, Europe and the world.