Mayor Walsh announces partnership with coUrbanize
January 22, 2015
Today, Mayor Martin J. Walsh announced the Department of Neighborhood Development (DND) is partnering with coUrbanize, a local tech start up,on an online platform that will increase transparency in the development of City-owned land and City-funded housing. This launch complements Mayor Walsh’s State of the City Neighborhood Homes Initiative announcement that 300 city-owned parcels will be made available for development of housing for low-and middle-income families.
“I encourage residents to use this innovative platform to stay connected and engaged as development on City-owned land is proposed and reviewed,” said Mayor Walsh. “My administration is committed to a transparent development process and this partnership with coUrbanize will help us to deliver on that promise.”
“We are thrilled to enhance the City’s existing community engagement process by bringing it online with even more transparency and accessible ways for communities to participate in local development,” said coUrbanize CEO and Co-Founder Karin Brandt.
The coUrbanize platform, accessible on DND’s web site, will help residents and developers more easily find information about DND development projects and City-owned properties available for development. Boston residents will be able to track local projects, find meeting times, and submit online feedback through a forum hosted on DND’s website and at coUrbanize.com. In addition, the coUrbanize platform will be used to catalogue information about City-owned land and buildings available for development. This partnership delivers on a commitment the Mayor made in “Housing a Changing City: Boston 2030” to increase transparency, efficiency, and accountability in Boston land development.
Although the City currently has a robust community engagement process around the use of its land and buildings, the coUrbanize platform will give residents another way to engage in the process, ensuring that developments best meet the needs of neighborhoods in which they are located.
coUrbanize.com is a Cambridge-based startup and 2013 graduate of the prestigious accelerator, TechStars. coUrbanize works with real estate developers and municipalities to create civic engagement through an online platform that complements public meetings with online conversations. Through the coUrbanize platform, residents can learn about local projects, find meeting information, ask questions, provide feedback on project plans, and interact with fellow residents.