Tactics for Citizen Urbanism: Malón Urbano

Tactics for Citizen Urbanism: Malón Urbano
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Malón Urbano is an urban tactic of short term action for long term change.On Friday March 30th 2012 and Friday March 2nd, 2012, we organized two Malones Urbanos in the Bellavista neighborhood of Santiago, Chile. Translated loosely, a malon is a potluck – a communal event where guests and participants contribute something of their own towards the event’s success. In this case, we asked the residents of the Bellavista community to share their thoughts, hopes and dreams of what Bellavista represented and what, with care and creativity, Bellavista could become. We didn’t organize these malones purely for the enjoyment of a bright summer day (summer in the southern hemisphere!). We invited Bellavista residents to publicly shape the direction of Declaratoria de Zona Tipica Para Bellavista, a proposal for the Chilean Council for National Heritage to designate Bellavista as a historical/heritage zone. We closed the street to traffic, set up picnic tables and invited neighbors to get to know each other and give personal input on the neighborhood’s heritage resources, introduce topics affecting quality-of-life and proposing solutions for long-term neighborhood improvement. Food, games, and dancing rounded out the afternoon.The two malones were attended by more than 300 people who shared 427 individual ideas, 217 of them expressed on hand-written notes posted on our Tree of Ideas and the remainder delivered in 210 hashtagged tweets. These ideas were compiled and organized by Ciudad Emergente and CitiSent as inputs for the report Bellavista Patrimonio de Todos created by the organization Ciudad Viva, the primary sponsor of Bellavista’s designation as a historical zone, with support from UNESCO.