A Marketplace for Placemaking
Why Placemaking?
Cities are quickly becoming the best problem-solving laboratories in America. As the global urban population grows by 65 million people annually, there can be no question that innovative solutions not only need to be created but easily shared and replicated among placemakers. The time is right to capitalize on a mounting interest in Placemaking. PlaceMarket will help solidify and direct a burgeoning field.
PlaceMarket is:
  • an open forum for shared ideas
  • a platform for showcasing cool people and work
  • a catalogue of proven solutions for community challenges
  • a network connecting aspiring and expert placemakers
Led by the Michigan Municipal League and Little Things Labs, PlaceMarket will bring together a curated network of big thinkers and doers, who understand how to take urban ideas to action. The team will help collect, curate and proliferate proven ideas, resources and solutions to community challenges.
PlaceMarket's initial scope of operations is within the State of Michigan, with a special focus on post-industrial cities. Leveraging the tremendous amount of investment in the city of Detroit, PlaceMarket will benefit from proximity to the front lines of place-based change strategies.
Join us November 12th at the Scarab Club in the heart of Detroit's Midtown district to build PlaceMarket.
Day 1
November 12, 2012

Our initial Placemaking gathering will include an immersive period at several progressive projects, in depth exploration of networking and informational needs of placemakers, and plenty of time to create new ideas and best assist those doing this work. Placemakers operating on local and state levels will be connected to national players to discuss the need for a forum that allows easier communication of ideas and resources around Placemaking. After identifying shared challenges and needs, attendees will be invited to collaborate and vision the ideal Placemaking tool-kit.
Actvity: Location

9:00 am
Team Coffee & Inventory: Scarab Club
10:00 am
12:30 pm
2:00 pm
Stroll: Midtown
2:30 pm
Building a Case: Scarab Club
3:00 pm
Building a Platform: Scarab Club
5:45 pm
Team Conclusion: Scarab Club
6:00 pm
Group Dinner: Fowling Warehouse
Day 2
November 13, 2012

Statewide leaders will lay the groundwork for moving Placemaking from theory to action at a local level. National experts will explore current best practices through case studies and lead the group to identify barriers and challenges to Placemaking at a local level. We will also critique current systems for sharing ideas and catalyzing action amongst individual and institutional placemakers, envision tools and systems that will allow faster and more effective proliferation of best practices in Placemaking, enhance the connectivity of those most proactively working in Placemaking.
Actvity: Location

9:00 am
Coffee & Introduction: Scarab Club
9:30 am
Expert Conversations

Placemakers on the Front Line
Nate Berg, Urban Affairs Journalist

Translating Big Ideas into Scalable Action
Fred Kent, Project for Public Spaces

Importance of Context
John Norquist, Congress for the New Urbanism

Scarab Club
11:00 am
Small Group Discussion: Scarab Club
12:00 pm
Working Lunch: Scarab Club
1:00 pm
Conclusion: Scarab Club
PlaceMarket brings together nationally recognized municipal service organizations in the Michigan Municipal League, along with innovative start-ups like Little Things. Both have demonstrated abilities to take big ideas to action having delivered the World's Largest Community Visioning Process and the largest Entrepreneurial Resource Index in the country respectively.
The Michigan Municipal League aids Michigan communities in creating desirable and unique places to provide educational opportunities for elected and appointed officials and to assist municipal leaders in administering community services. The Michigan Municipal League acts with the fervor of entrepreneurs to passionately push change for better communities and a better Michigan.
Little Things Labs is an independent innovation laboratory, working on place-making, talent retention and creative economy solutions in mid-sized and post-industrial American cities. In collaboration with foundations, corporations and non-profits, Little Things Labs discovers, designs and rapidly prototypes tools, models and processes that redefine community challenges as transformative opportunities.
Foundations, national media outlets, research organizations and local activists who have excelled in positive Placemaking, have joined the effort to create PlaceMarket. Listed below are guests who will be joining us for our first PlaceMarket gathering.
Achille Bianchi: We Are Mode Shift
Alphons Van Adrichem: Central Indiana Community Foundation
Amy Crook: People for Urban Progress
Anthony Lavader: People for Urban Progress
Arnold Weinfeld: Michigan Municipal League
Brian Balasia: Digerati
Claire Nelson: Model D
Colin Groth: Strive Network
Colleen Layton: Michigan Municipal League
Dacia Snider: Soapbox Cincinnati
Dan Gilmartin: Michigan Municipal League
David Hunke: Digerati
Eric Avner: Haile U.S. Bank Foundation
Eric Howard: The Alley Project
Erin Kelly: Next Energy
Fred Kent: Project for Public Spaces
Halima Cassells: Detroit Mural Factory
Heather Van Poucker: Michigan Municipal League
Jim Walker: Big Car
John Norquist: Congress for New Urbanism
Joe Hansbauer: uGive
Joe Hudson: Hudson Webber Foundation
Josh McManus: Little Things Labs
Kate Bordine: Ponyride
Kate Daughdrill: Detroit Soup
Katy Locker: Hudson Webber Foundation
Kyle Bartell: Pathways to Parks
Lauren Minkus: The Pittsburgh Foundation
Luke Forrest: Michigan Municipal League
Matt Naimi: Recycle Here!
Melinda Anderson: Detroit Creative Cooridor Center
Melissa Dittmer: RogueHAA
Michael Bricker: People for Urban Progress
Michael Forsyth: Detroit Economic Growth Corporation
Nate Berg: Urban Affairs Journalist
Randall Fogelman: Eastern Market
Regina Bell: Digerati
Rob Ferrari: Michigan Municipal League
Rory Neuner: Public Policy Consultant
Sarah Szurpicki: Great Lakes Urban Exchange
Sean Mann: Michigan Municipal League
Shaunta Marsh: Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art
Suzanne Vier: Tashmoo Biergarten
Ted Balowski: Hatch Detroit
Tunde Wey: UIX Detroit
Vince Keenan: Publius
For more details about PlaceMarket or this event, please call or email Josh McManus at 423.544.9455 or