Your Future Downtown

In many cities across the country, urban renewal is a policy supported by local governments.  It typically involves renovation and investment that is encouraged by local governments, often combined with business incentives.  Historically, there has not been a way to engage large groups of people in the urban renewal process.  Thanks to Rock Hill, South Carolina’s Jason Broadwater, that’s all about to change.
Broadwater’s new online social crowdsourcing tool, Aday Remus, uses the wisdom of the crowd to facilitate smart and efficient community development.   Aday Remus allows users to log on and select empty buildings, vacant lots, and even existing businesses to modify and improve. Users can choose to start a project of their own, or contribute to a project that another user has already started.  Aday Remus was recently featured in an article from the blog of the Charlotte Business Journal.
While Aday Remus for most people is likely to be a fun Internet destination for lovers of social media, Broadwater envisions it being used for a far more noble and useful purpose.  Localities can use Aday Remus as a resource to solicit input from the community on urban revitalization efforts.  “Aday Remus is the ability to chose a building and describe what you would like to see in that building,” says Broadwater.  “It becomes crowdsourcing applied to community and economic development,” he says.
Aday Remus is yet another example of how open innovation can be used for purposes that benefit society.  We’re pulling for Aday Remus and if one day it turns out that communities all across the world are using it as a portal for urban design and renewal, remember you heard about it here first!

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