Anyone here wants to build small public spaces? (Call for Proposals by UN Habitat)

We just got a pointer by dear @khatuna for an interesting tender by UN Habitat where they are looking to fund prototypes / demonstration projects of small public spaces (and potentially to scale such projects up afterwards). Key data of the call for proposals:

  • Objective: Design, creation and protection of innovative public spaces, either one larger or 5-10 smaller interventions per project. The project must contribute (on the pilot stage, not to completion) to “improved local policies, plans and designs for … public spaces … which support more compact, better integrated and well connected, socially inclusive and resilient cities and neighbourhoods”.

  • Budget: up to 100,000 USD per application

  • Deadline: 2018-11-14

  • Applicable countries: Bangladesh, Brazil, Cameroon, Colombia, Cote D’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Guinea, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Kosovo, Lebanon, Mexico, Mozambique, Nepal, Palestine, Peru, Vietnam

  • Possible applicants: local authorities; non-profit organizations


I’ll probably forget most people for whom this could be relevant, so please help me out in the comments … but for starters:

  • @hazem, because “urban planning” and public spaces … Egypt is sadly not on the list of implementation countries though, but maybe you’d like to join the application writing anyway

  • @anu, because Nepal is on the list, and I already talked with Milan Rai and if the Edgeryders organization is an eligible main applicant, he’d be interested to create an application with us around the green public space interventions he is doing in Kathmandu already (examples: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

1 Like

Thanks Matt!

Maybe @bachar_khattar @amer @bilal would be interested or know people?
Also sending it to some contacts in NELIS network…

1 Like

Thanks for the recommendation, we’ve started a semi-public semi-private community home in Beirut and I know of others who work on open spaces in Lebanon to share this with :slight_smile:
Huge hugs from Lille :slight_smile:

1 Like

i am in berlin these days if anyone comes across similar funding, thanks!

1 Like

About applying with Edgeryders OÜ for this tender in Nepal

Some updates from @anu, whom I asked to find out how Edgeryders can fulfill the formal requirements for applying to this tender:

  • Non-profit status. According to the call for proposals, the applicant needs to be a local government or non-profit organization (we are).

  • Registration in Nepal. According to the call for proposals, the applicants needs to supply both a “proof of registration in country of origin” and a “proof of registration in country of operation”. We don’t have that yet, but we could do so before the application deadline.

  • Registering a branch office in Nepal. According to the startup support company (lawyers, accountants etc.) that Anu talked to, registering Edgeryders in Nepal is easily possible and can be done (in expedited form) within one week by that startup support company. We can opt to either register a dependent or independent branch office – both is fine and the admin complexity it entails on the Nepal side is similar. The difference seems to be if the branch office receives payments from clients directly or via the main office. EDIT: Though the startup support company did not mention it, I am pretty sure we will have to sign some paper documents and deliver them to Nepal as originals. Still possible by courier service, but will add to the cost and make keeping the deadline more difficult.

  • Paying taxes in Nepal. We’d have to pay taxes in Nepal for profits generated by the branch office in Nepal. There might be discounts / tax-exemptions for us because the Edgeryders branch office would be registered as an INGO type organization inside Nepal – this applies, because we are a not-for-profit company in our home country. Tax formalities in Nepal are said to be “simple” and can be handled by that startup support company for us.

  • Cost of registration. The cost for the expedited branch office registration is 60,000 NPR (450 EUR). This includes everything incl. the required translation and notarization of Edgeryders’ company documents in Nepali.

My take: This tender is strange because it has a tight time between publication and deadline (one month) and extreme formal requirements that I don’t know from other UN tenders: local presence, local registration certificate, two years of audited accounts etc… So it might be one of these public procurements that are somehow already decided or nearly decided internally. Means, it does not make much sense to invest long hours and 450 EUR and to accept permanent liabilities for making tax statements etc. in Nepal just to apply here. Esp. given these costs, it’s a bit much of effort for an application …

However, it’s great that now we know how we can register in Nepal once we want to. When I am settled in Nepal and it becomes clear that having a branch office there will open many more ways to apply for projects, we really might want to do this.

So I think I’ll not pursue this further. If anyone (esp. from my fellow @directors) has a different opinion or wants to pursue this further, welcome to tell of course.

1 Like

Tagging @jakobskote who has skills in both building and architecture.

1 Like

We do not have that. We could ask for an audit of FY 2017, that’s all we have.

Is there no way we can find out? Would maybe @khatuna be up for making a call and finding out how weird would be if we applied? Like you, Matt, I think it is really cool that we can do this stuff, and it is exactly the kind of crazy small investment that ER should be making. Add that you are moving to Nepal…

I would at least look into it a little further, since it could bring some much needed funding for the Nepal project.

1 Like

Oh … I thought we at least have that one audit already, but just remembered that it was just an internal evaluation by the European Commission. Well then … makes it even tighter. How long would an audit take?

Both Anu and Milan already mentioned applications they could not make “for lack of an organization”. So there is probably an opportunity for Edgeryders’ role as a “host organization” in Nepal, and I agree that we should register a branch office there. Still, for this UN Habitat application it seems too tight to get it all done in time.

1 Like

Your project concept is truly compelling…should be funded. If not by them, then someone…

1 Like

No idea. I would not risk it.

1 Like