Made in the Lower East Side: miLES Storefront Transformer - a Kickstarter Campaign to Activate a Vacant Storefront Into a Pop-up Neighborhood Hub This Winter in New York

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There are over 200 vacant storefronts in the greater Lower East Side of Manhattan. miLES is crowdfunding a pop-up rental model that would utilize vacant storefronts to incubate emerging projects from entrepreneurs, creatives and community groups.

Think “airbnb for storefronts” (Fast Company) meets “community incubator” (The Huffington Post).

There are over 200 vacant storefronts in the greater Lower East Side of Manhattan. miLES is proposing a project that would utilize vacant storefronts to incubate emerging projects from entrepreneurs, creatives and community groups. Imagine a shape-shifting storefront, one space, many possibilities: from an independent arts space one week to designer fashion boutique the next; from cooking classroom on Thursday to locavore snack bar on Friday.

The miLES Storefront Transformer is a versatile set of furnishing and amenities to program any storefront - essentially a 6ft cube that can be easily transported and subdivided to roll through any storefront door. When unfolded, the Transformer provides functional elements such as shelving, partitions, tables, seats, stage, as well as infrastructure such as lighting, WIFI, power strips, speakers, projectors, and PA system so all the basic ingredients are in place create your own pop-up!

We will prototype and demonstrate a miLES Storefront Transformer in action this November and December. We will transform a vacant storefront in the Lower East Side to incubate 7 pop-up ideas. If successfully funded, the storefront transformer will continue to operate throughout next year to incubate more pop-up ideas.

The 7 Pop-up Themes and collaborators for this pop-up demonstration include:

Week 1 SHOW - Prototype Alpha - by Jack Kirby Museum & Research Center

Week 2 PLAY - Blood, Sweat & Fears - by Chelsea Campbell

Week 3 LEARN - Brooklyn Brainery Takes Manhattan - by Brooklyn Brainery

Week 4 SHARE - The Pop-up Non-Profit - Creating a pop-up home for the street-based organization - by The Space at Tompkins

Week 5 MAKE - Makers Salon- One week of open workspace, hand-on classes, discussion and making experiences around the evolution of DIY and craft - from hand to machine to tech - by Kollabora with Guest Curator Hsing Wei from The Makery

Week 6 SHOP - stopTHINKshop Holiday pop-up shop - by TYTHEdesign

Week 7 EAT - Featherbed Lane - by Ghetto Gastro

Journalism Partner - Imagination in Space

App for Urban Art Exploer - MUSEY

Fabrication - Machine Made

Architecture & Urban Strategy - Architecture Commons

About the Creator:

Made in the Lower East Side (miLES) http://madeinles.org

We open storefronts to possibilities.

Think of us as the Airbnb for storefronts. We make storefronts accessible to everyone. Since April 2013, miLES has launched their pilot storefront and have received over 100 pop-up requests. We have produced 14 pop-up shops, 20 pop-up classes, two design festivals, and even a pop-up film festival! We have worked with a wide range of clients from cultural institutions like the New Museum to entrepreneurs like Etsy sellers.

We want to create a neighborhood for ideas incubation using underused spaces.

Resources:

Kickstarter Link: http://kck.st/158sEPG
Press Resources: http://storefronttransformer.com/press

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Eric Ho

Heidi Sloane
@MadeinLES
since: 05/2012
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