2:15 AM / Wednesday October 4, 2023

7 Jun 2013

City of Phila. announces new urban mechanics challenge grants competition

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June 7, 2013 Category: Color Of Money Posted by:

$25,000 in grant funding available for creative, design-based projects that improve the civic space.


The Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics, in partnership with the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy will offer up to seven New Urban Mechanics Challenge Grants, totaling $25,000, to individuals or groups who create an innovative project that incorporates art and design to address civic challenges or improve a public space. 


“To find answers to the challenges of today, City governments have to think creatively and engage with citizens and businesses outside of government to find new solutions to civic challenges,” said Mayor Michael A. Nutter.  “Our hope is to leverage the creative strength and problem-solving power of our residents with the New Urban Mechanics Challenge Grant competition.”


The Challenge Grants will range in value from $2,000 to $7,000.  Grant awardees will also receive support and project input from the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics and the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy. 


“Great cities are increasingly driven by creativity and innovation, and we are very excited to work with the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics on this innovative competition to source and support solutions to Philadelphia’s civic challenges that utilize the arts and design,” said Gary Steuer, City of Philadelphia Chief Cultural Officer. 


The grant application period opens today. Applications and additional information is available on Change By Us PHL (  To be eligible, Challenge Grant applicants must be based in Philadelphia and create a project posting on Change By Us PHL.  The application period will close Wednesday, July 3.


Winners will be selected by a review committee, made up of representatives of the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics, the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, the Office of Transportation and Utilities and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. 


Grant funding is provided by The Knight Foundation and will managed by CEOs for Cities. 


“This design competition is another display of Philadelphia’s efforts to harness the power of citizens to solve civic challenges and we are excited to support it,” said Donna Frisby-Greenwood, Philadelphia Program Director for The Knight Foundation.


An in-person information session on the New Urban Mechanics Challenge Grant competition will be held at the Municipal Services Building, 16th floor, Conference Room B on Wednesday, June 12, 1 PM.


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