Only weeks after they made their bold plan public, the team behind Spark York have been inundated with people wanting to move in.
Reynards garage site, Piccadilly
First tenants could move in April 2017
Spark, the innovative enterprise hub made out of shipping containers, is due to be up and running by May 2017.
The modular space aims to be a hub of business, food and drink, entertainment and social activities.
And everyone, it seems, wants a piece of the action.
When you see the video they’ve made below, you’ll understand why.
‘Hey, I could do this!’
“The response has been phenomenal; far exceeding our expectations,” said Joe Gardham, one of the three-strong team behind the north of England’s first ‘box park’.
There will be 25 units created from re-fashioned shipping containers, plus the shared workspace and studio. And they’ve already had more than 200 expressions of interest.
So far they have had inquiries from “chefs and baristas, bakers and artists, IT companies and letting agents, charities, barbers and beauticians, activities for young people, activities for older people, toys and games.
“There’s been some really off-the-wall ideas submitted. It’s seriously mind-blowing the diversity of applications thus far.”
More the merrier
Spark York was given the green light by the council last month. It will transform the former Reynards garage site into a buzzing hub housing shops, street food and community activities.
It will become a performance space at night featuring music festivals and more.
And, Joe says, “we will be running a huge range of daytime activities at Spark”. These could include tea dances for older residents, activities with stay-at-home parents, history workshops and training to help people into work.
The number of applications shows “there’s so much demand and desire for affordable city centre space, and the project more widely,” said Joe.
You’ve still time to get on board. If you’d like to be involved, register here.
We’re going to close to applications at the end of January, at which point we have the mammoth task of sifting through them all and making some tough decisions.
What happens next
Spark York has already got its shipping containers sorted. They have been donated by a local logistics company.
They are still in use but will be brought to the city when needed.
So what happens next?
Applications close at the end of January
Spark York team begin process of choosing first tenants
Launch crowd-funding appeal so people can buy into and support the project
First consultation events in January, where people can meet the team, ask questions and feed into the plans
In February there’ll be meetings for prospective tenants to network, see the plans, find out more about costs etc
As Joe says:
“Joe says, “we will be running a huge range of daytime activities at Spark”. These could include tea dances for older residents,”
This typifies the pathetic and limited attitudes of some Yorkshire folk to older people. Approaching 80, why should I be limited to this sad vision of the elderly? I would love more intergenerational activities between young and old, residents and tourists,More involvement of the generations; students , tourists and young people, to open up what they have in common and what they can learn and experience from each other.
York suffers from a huge lack of imagination in the exploitation of its history and potential, and that’s why I shudder at this shipping container concept!
I am also hoping this is an opening for gallery/wall spaces for artists living in and around York,as a group and individuals alike (no age barriers inc)……,we’ve not had a home to go to since Hungry Artist 2014 to 2016 ?