Project news
Edit 24 August 2021
by NEXTGEN MICROCITIES PROJECT TEAM

Makerspaces in Valmiera and Ventspils. Creating a community and new opportunities in microcities.

valmiera and ventspil project
Makerspace is not a new concept. In Europe and elsewhere in the world, we have seen their upswing in recent decades. Microcities Valmiera and Ventspils, however, created their first makerspaces only recently. It is safe to say that both these cities are on their way to new opportunities and exciting experiences. But why should these microcity makerspaces be a big deal, and how to use them to their full potential?

DARE, the makerspace In Valmiera opened its doors in February 2020 - just before the global pandemic hit, severely impacting functioning of the space. The tough times lingered, however now DARE is on its intended path bringing together creative enthusiasts, encouraging people to try and learn new skills. The most significant milestone to date was the recent opportunity to meet its community face-to-face. In July 2021, DARE organized an Idea Market, a discussion event for creative enthusiasts, young people, entrepreneurs and active residents of Valmiera to listen to experts, exchange ideas, and share their opinions about the region’s creative industries. The most important conclusion of the discussion was that it was essential to preserve and maintain a place in Valmiera for the community of creative people and enthusiasts to meet and express themselves. Sharing experiences and exchanging helpful advice and ideas unite this community and provide a basis for sustainable start-ups and solutions for urban development. DARE has become a place and a platform that enables the creative energy and keeps it flowing through Valmiera city and Vidzeme region.

 

dare brand

 

Ventspils opened RADE - a design workshop, only recently on 1 June 2021. RADE is a technology room where individuals and entrepreneurs can create and print various prototypes and products, make labels, print photos, and create product packaging. State-of-the-art equipment transfers almost any design to clothing, accessories, and wide variety of materials, such as plastic, metal, wood, acrylic and various composite materials. Makers, enthusiasts and entrepreneurs are welcome to the design workshop to print photos, make labels or create product packaging.

 

Rade workshop

 

Although services offered in Valmiera and Ventspils slightly differ, both makerspaces provide an open, friendly and creative environment. Makerspaces play essential role for local communities not only because they offer facilities, equipment and expertise that Is unavailable at home, but because they become the central networking venue for entrepreneurs and those with business ideas to meet. Generating and sharing ideas encourage new businesses to emerge in cities and regions, contributing to urban and regional growth, creating jobs and developing industries.

The sustainability of the makerspaces is a focal point for the future. For successful operation, both makerspaces will implement business models specific to the requirements of each microcity. They also intend to pay particular attention to such crucial factors as community engagement and its leaders, flexibility and responding to the needs of the community, genuine participation of the makerspace staff and volunteers, efficiency and transparency, as well as building strong partnerships locally, nationally and internationally.
For more Information on both makerspaces visit Facebook: @DARE.VDK and @ventspils.rade;  Instagram: @dare_valmiera.

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