Your monthly roundup of news, tools, and events from the world of 8 80 Cities.

2019 Emerging City Champions Fellowship Accepting Applications

Emerging City Champions, a program supported by John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and powered by 8 80 Cities, is now accepting applications for its 2019-2020 fellowship. The program provides young civic innovators with seed funding, leadership training and practical tools to launch transformative projects to enhance public space, urban mobility or civic engagement in their city.  

The Emerging City Champions Fellowship is open to applicants ages 19-35, with project ideas that take place in or benefit one of the 26 communities where Knight invests. Past projects have ranged from beehives to jukeboxes, mentorship programs to murals, block parties to storytelling bike tours.

The deadline to apply is Sunday, May 12, 2019, at 11:59 p.m. EST

Apply Now...

From the 8 80 Blog: All Aboard the Transit Pilot Project

In growing communities, cities are confronted with wicked congestion problems all the time. What’s one way of fixing a problem? Piloting solutions!

This was the approach that the City of Toronto took to resolve congestion issues along King Street. The 2.6 km stretch is the busiest surface route in the entire Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) system with comparable numbers to the Young-University Subway line.

Continue reading...

Green Schoolyards for All Children

Today, when high rates of stress, depression, obesity, diabetes and other health risks associated with sedentary lifestyles in children are alarming, we need to rethink the way we facilitate physical activity for kids. Natural playgrounds - or green schoolyards-, according to Children & Nature Network report, are one of the best ways of improving physical and mental health, cognitive skills, creativity, and social bonding. 

Read the full report...

Featured Emerging City Champions

Past Emerging City Champions participants have made significant improvements to their communities. Using their skills as musicians, educators, mechanics, artists, or small business owners, they have created neighbourhood programs, community events, interactive public art, and vibrant public spaces that have pushed boundaries, changed mindsets, and in some cases inspired long-term investment in the public realm.These program alumni also form the growing Emerging City Champions network, supporting future participants in their community.

Check out some of the work of past Emerging City Champions on our Instagram.


Wintermission Learnings and Experiences

After the launch of our Wintermission program during the  Winter Cities Shake Up Conference in Saskatoon this past January, we worked with the three winning cities - Eau Claire, WI, Buffalo, NY, and Leadville, CO, during February and March to gather data and get insights from the community, partners and stakeholders to identify challenges and opportunities to bring  public life to public spaces in winter.

Read about our takeaways from Eau Claire, Buffalo, and Leadville.

Subscribe to the Wintermission Newsletter to get news and updates about the program.


Three Powerful Benefits of the Civic Commons

Last year, 8 80 Cities partnered with Reimagining the Civic Commons on a learning journey across Toronto. The initiative continues to share out key learning about the benefits of great civic spaces.

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From Pop-up to Permanent: Five Lessons in Tactical Urbanism

At 8 80 Cities, we believe in the power of pop-ups to engage residents and demonstrate the simplicity of people-centered public space transformation. In this article, Melinda Hanson and Majed Adbulsamad, from Global Designing Cities Initiative beautifully summarize lessons learnt and a useful framework for guiding the planning and implementation of pop-up projects across the globe. We couldn’t agree more, and couldn’t have written it better ourselves!

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What Would an Age-Friendly City Look Like?

Have you ever thought about where you’ll live when you’re older? What will that space look and feel like? Alice Grahame talks about the value of good design for cities adapting to the demands of an ageing population.

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Our friends at the Children & Nature Network are hosting the 2019 Children & Nature Network International Conference in Oakland, California, May 16-18, 2019. Join this premier gathering of leaders, advocates and activists from the children and nature movement. You’ll be inspired by three days of powerful keynotes, expertly-curated workshops, field trips and events designed to support the work you do to connect children, families and communities to nature. Help spread the word and get the conversation going at #CNC2019.


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