Boston, MA- Make Architecture Happen, a new web-based platform exclusively for architects and designers is officially launching this week. It features 15 innovative projects ranging from a walkable boardwalk made from over 200 pieces of laser-cut recycled lumber to a community center that will provide jobs in a remote Tibetan village. Visitors to the site are encouraged to give to the projects they want to support and will be offered rewards and incentives by designers for their help.

By utilizing the potential of crowdfunding, Make Architecture Happen connects architectural enthusiasts, practitioners, and educators to fund forward-thinking projects by designers around the world. Initial project submissions arrived from groups like Community Design Resource Center of Boston, Architecture for Change, and Hero Reports. The site accepts submissions for projects by designers and architects on a rolling basis and those interested can submit a project at www.makearchitecturehappen.com/start-a-campaign.

The website was initially founded by Boston based architectural student Daniel Lear, as a response to the lack of opportunities that young architects, landscape designers, and urban planners are afforded as emerging practitioners in their field. Lear soon recognized that the site could become a way to democratize the often rarefied world of architecture, making projects happen in neighborhoods lacking access to traditional funding sources. Lear believes that “Crowdfunding architecture is a way to empower communities and gives designers the freedom to rethink traditional approaches to design problems and methods of building.”

One of the first projects submitted during the site’s open call envisions gathering spaces at a new community garden to be built on a vacant lot in Mattapan, a neighborhood outside of Boston. The city is able to provide funding for the infrastructure of the garden, but not for additions like benches, tables or other structures that support gathering. These elements are essential components of urban placemaking and help to create a stronger connection between residents. Massachusetts College of Art and Design has agreed to donate the time and labor for designing these structures. Now all that’s needed is the support for the actual material costs. Make Architecture Happen bridges this gap, with the hopes of helping meaningful architecture projects find an audience and become a reality. “I’m excited about the potential that the site has to create partnerships within and beyond the architectural community, connecting designers with the resources they need,” says Lear.

You can view all the project submissions at www.makearchitecturehappen.com