The Proměny Foundation has issued a call for grant applications under which assistance is offered to Czech cities for projects involving comprehensive restoration of public parks. The selected project will receive a grant of up to CZK 25 million. Applications can be submitted until the end of March 2015.
Under the 2014 Call for Grant Applications, applications may be submitted by municipalities with a population of over eight thousand inhabitants as well as by districts and boroughs of large cities, regardless of their population size. Grants are intended for the construction or reconstruction of a public area, such as a park, public garden, and recreational greenery. Grants may be used to pay for as much as 90% of total costs. An important requirement for obtaining assistance is the involvement of local inhabitants in the project, starting at the preparatory stage.
"The project that will be selected must respond to actual demand and reflect the needs of the local population. At the same time, it should be consistent with the long-term urban development plan of the applicable municipality. The success of an application will mainly depend on how meticulously and thoroughly the project plan is prepared," says the Director of the Proměny Foundation, Jitka Přerovská, in explaining the main conditions of the call for proposals. "Grants we disburse are intended to support conceptual transformations of the public space as opposed to investments into isolated sections of parks or into the renewal of urban furniture planned on a drawing board in a manner detached from life in the locality. For any public area to function well, the cooperation of local authorities, inhabitants, and specialists is always necessary."
The deadline for submitting applications is 31 March 2015. In the subsequent months, applications will be reviewed during three evaluation rounds. The results will be published at the end of next year. The selected project is expected to be executed within the following three years.
The terms of the call for proposals as well as inspiration and best practice examples from the Czech Republic will be presented at the 2015 City Parks Conference held by the Proměny Foundation at the National Technical Library in Prague on 12 February 2015. At the beginning of 2015, the Proměny Foundation will launch a new section of the www.promenypromesta.cz website, which will be dedicated to urban development. The section will contain useful information for grant applicants as well as for other users.
The 2014 Call for Grant Applications is the fifth call issued by the Proměny Foundation under its Parks Program since 2006. To date, more than CZK 94 million in grants has been disbursed to assist the development of municipal parks. The revitalization of River Island Santos in Sušice, which was completed last year, has received the Park of the Year 2014 award bestowed by industry specialists. The reconstruction of the Jirásek Orchards in Litoměřice is currently at the finishing stage. The year 2015 will see the beginning of renovation of a river embankment in Litomyšl.