2011 Request for Proposals
Request for Proposals - Tulane City Center Pro Bono Design and Planning Community Grants Program
The Tulane City Center (TCC) is inviting proposals from New Orleans-based non-profit and community-based organizations for pro bono design and planning services. Proposals must be for a specific project (i.e. not for ongoing design services for the organization), and the project must address a stated need that exists in the New Orleans area. We have enjoyed a good relationship with many local organizations over the past five years and we look forward sharing this excellence in design and planning with all residents of the New Orleans area.
Who We Are
Based at the Tulane School of Architecture (TSA), the TCC is an applied research and outreach center dedicated to improving the built environment of New Orleans and offering opportunities to faculty and students at TSA to bring technical assistance in design development, planning, and construction to community-based organizations in New Orleans. Our goal is to bring these services into communities underserved by the design and planning professions and to maximize community involvement and leadership in efforts to rebuild and improve our region. Although the TCC was conceived of prior to Hurricane Katrina, it was launched in the months following the storm with a substantially more urgent and significant mandate. We have established multiple programmatic themes that deal with issues of affordable housing (in partnership with Neighborhood Housing Services New Orleans), sustainable ‘green’ design and construction for our hot and humid climate (in partnership with the LSU Ag Center and the New Orleans Botanical Garden), and progressive land use proposals with a focus on the development of the urban agriculture sector (in partnership with the New Orleans Food and Farm Network), among others. The common thread in all of this work is that we bring technical resources - specifically design and planning services - in support of projects lead by locally-based nonprofit organizations.
Thanks to a gift from an anonymous supporter, this grants program will extend the work of the University Community Design Partnerships program.
Do You Qualify for the Program?
You must be a New Orleans based nonprofit organization (or operate under the fiscal sponsorship of a nonprofit organization) with a specific project for which you need design and planning services. The TCC has a track record of working with both large and established non-profit organizations and small and less formal community organizations and we welcome proposals from groups at either end of the scale.
Description of Services Provided to the Grantees:
Having worked with many nonprofit organizations, we at the TCC are well aware of the need to think big to address big challenges. We are also aware of the significant budget limitations that most - if not all - non-profits are constantly balancing. So often there are great ideas but there is no access to the professional services needed to bring these ideas to life in a way that can start to attract the funding and other support needed to execute a development project. This grant program exists to fill that gap. We will work with two to three non-profit organizations each year to develop a full schematic design/planning packet for each of their defi ned development projects. This resource will ensure each group is as well prepared as possible to make the next critical steps toward realizing their visions for the future.
The TCC will provide limited design and planning services for a single development project. The TCC will begin work on the project under the structure of this grant program on August 1, 2011 and will complete the work by December 30, 2011.
1. Research: The TCC team will have multiple meetings with the successful applicants to learn more about their project and will need to make multiple visits to the site/s of the proposed project. We will research the appropriate building codes and zoning ordinances and become familiar with other successful examples of similar projects.
2. Design and Create: The design and planning process will involve a series of proposals from the TCC team and the incorporation of project partner feedback until we have captured your aspirations for each project.
3. Finalize the Design: Together we will select the best design scheme. Then we will look at the details and figure out how to make it work really well. We will produce basic cost estimates
for full project development and will suggest a plan for developing the design over time.
4. Prepare the Design Packet: When a design and development scheme has been fi nalized, we will incorporate the work into a single document that is provided to the successful applicant in printed and digital form for ongoing promotion and fundraising purposes. This final product will likely include project and organization descriptions, site documentation, proposed site plans, proposed building plans, graphic renderings of the fully developed site, phased development proposals, cost estimates for each phase and for the total project, and a preferred development timeline.
Making a Proposal:
To apply for the TCC Pro Bono Design and Planning Community Grants Program prepare a single packet that contains the following information and mail to the TCC no later than May 15th 2011.
Provide the following information on a single page at the beginning of your application packet
Name of Organization
Name of project for which you are requesting pro bono design and planning services
Answer the following questions in no more than 3 pages:
- Describe the work of your organization (please include your mission statement if you have one).
- What are your major accomplishments in the previous 3 years?
- Describe the project for which you are seeking pro bono design and planning services.
- Why is this project important?
- How will you sustain your efforts towards developing and then managing this project after our design work is completed?
Please provide a copy of your 501©3 letter of determination (or if you operate under a fiscal sponsorship, the letter from that organization and a letter confi rming your relationship). You will also need two letters of support from groups with whom you have worked or who are familiar with your work.
The TCC will let all applicants know of their selection no later than June 21st, 2010.
(Note: The TCC is not able to provide professionally certified ‘construction documents’ for a project. What we do is to work with organizations to develop a concise vision for project development up to what is known as ‘schematic design’. This will include basic cost estimates for full project development and is typically compiled as a booklet/publication that helps promote the project for full development funding (part of development funding typically includes architect’s professional fees to review schematic design and complete ‘design development’ and ‘construction documents’).
To download the RFP announcement click on the pdf below