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Another Urban Dream Brokerage project lights up Wellington

NEWS RELEASE: 28 September 2016
For immediate RELEASE

Another Urban Dream Brokerage project lights up Wellington

Wellington urban rejuvenation service Urban Dream Brokerage has found space for another innovative project enlivening Wellington - but for the first time the site is a secret.

Funded by Wellington City Council, the brokerage, a service of public art organisation Letting Space, has placed 55 projects in over 30 vacant spaces in the Capital in the last three years. For the latest, popular light festival producers Lux have created Glade,an indoor art experience like no other. It is tucked away in a secret location, where they say “weird nature blooms and oozes in an experimental ecosystem of light”.

Glade will launch on 30 September. Like all Urban Dream Brokerage projects, all Wellingtonians are invited to be immersed in this free eye-popping experience of wonder - a collision of art and science fiction . “ The LUX team has always dreamt of creating an indoor experience like Glade,” man aging director of Glade Mary Laine says.” When we had the opportunity to pilot such a project, it was our collaboration with Urban Dream Brokerage that turned that dream into reality. Their commitment to the greater Wellington mission of enabling high quality, accessible arts made them a perfect partner for LUX."

Other Urban Dream projects recently launched in We llington include Co liberate, a pilot for a new entrepreneurial wellness bus iness; Unseasonal Change an art exhibition that looked into the changes we might witness through climate change; and the Lucid Dream Bike engaged local artists, businesses and schools to make bicycle floats that illuminated the waterfront in a spectacular night parade that attracted hundreds on a wintery night.

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· “Our city centre has changed for the better in the last three years” says Urban Dream Brokerage co-founder Mark Amery, “with almost all of the spaces the service has used now full.” There is the sense that the city has turned a corner Amery says.

That’s backed up by the last Colliers report on retail space in the CBD which noted vacancy has continued to fall, and in the last six months of 2015 it halved in Willis Street and Lambton Quay."

“That doesn’t mean our works end,” says Amery. “It can make it even harder for new ideas to get through and find space. This service is more essential than ever. ” The Urban Dream Brokerage service has been important for Wellington’s creative capital brand. That brand was built on artist and emerging business’s access to inner-city space in the 1990s.

The Urban Dream Brokerage’s value has also been recognised by Wellington City Council, who last year granted the scheme a three year contract to help deliver its services.Letting Space led and assisted projects in vacant space have included the Free Store, for the distribution of supermarket waste in 2010 and the Moodbank for the public to register their moods in 2013. There has been a ‘People’s Cinema; for the screening of film, and the first Urban Dream Brokerage assisted project was an ‘open source’ community space in lower Tory Street run by collective consensus decision making. It has now been running for over four years and has hosted many 100s of community events.

“Cities aren’t made by property developers, local authorities, architects, urban designers and builders - they are made by people. The culture of a place is far more significant than any built environment that helps shape it,” Amery says.

Glade runs from Sept 30 th – October the 9 th from the Meeting Point, 6/22 Herd Street, Wellington

Glade is free but bookings are essential. For more information see http://www.eventfinda.co.nz/2016/glade/wellington-region

The Urban Dream Brokerage: www.urbandreambrokerage.org.nz

Notes to editors

About Urban Dream Brokerage

The Urban Dream brokerage was established in Wellington in 2013 by public art and urban revitalization organisation Letting Space, and is all out about connecting new ideas with vacant spaces to create new living and community spaces in our CBDs as our needs from city and town centres change.

Broker in Wellington is Laurie Foon, well known for her championing of local business and community with her successful fashion label Starfish.

55 innovative creative, community and business start-up projects have been placed in over 30 spaces in Wellington, Porirua and Dunedin.

The service have worked with more than 20 property owners, from some of New Zealand’s largest to its smallest, who have recognised the benefits of not letting their spaces lie vacant in terms of their upkeep and life, and the contribution they make to the development of urban centres.

The programme is receiving recognition throughout NZ and internationally, where it is part of a movement which sees similar schemes in place through Australia, the UK and Europe.

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