After announcing the funding of its first two projects in April, Rally Saint Louis — the first-of-its-kind non-profit platform that allows anyone to submit, vote for, and help fund ideas aimed at improving the greater St. Louis region — today announced it has funded its third endeavor: Project Blacktop.
Project Blacktop was submitted by rising Washington University student Tim Cooney, aiming to “beautify urban areas of St. Louis with functional outdoor basketball courts that serve as hubs for the neighborhood and host community building events.”
“I really hope that Project Blacktop’s court can become a place for people to gather and not only play pickup basketball, but also to host youth clinics for kids to learn the game,” said Cooney, who also plays on Washington University’s basketball team and attended St. Louis University High School. “The overall goal is to keep the court active and prevent it from turning into more dormant space, with active programming that I plan to take an active role in as well as anyone interested in helping.”
Funding for Project Blackop came from a variety of sources, including Hardee’s ($2,500), Emerson Electric ($2,000) and nearly $8,000 in consumer contributions. The City of St. Louis is now working with Rally Saint Louis to find an appropriate location for the basketball court which will be donated by the city.
“We’re proud to partner with Rally Saint Louis and a fine young leader like Tim Cooney to help fulfill his vision of providing an outdoor basketball venue for young people in the city,” said Otis Williams, deputy executive director of the St. Louis Development Corporation. “We’re currently exploring a number of options right now and hope to have a site chosen within the next two months.”
How Rally Saint Louis Works
- Anyone visiting RallySTL.org can submit an idea for how to market the region. There is no set formula: From campaign slogans to beautification projects to highlighting a favorite cultural destination.
- Residents can then vote for their favorite campaign ideas, and those ideas receiving the most votes from the crowd will proceed.
- The Rally budgeting committee, comprised of individuals from companies and agencies in St. Louis then set a budget and resources needed to complete the project.
- The budgeted ideas are then moved from voting to the funding stage. If someone likes an idea and wants to see it executed, they must donate small denominations to see it come to fruition.
- If a project reaches funding goals, it will be executed by a St. Louis-area partner. Ideas that do not reach funding goals in 90 days are removed from the site.