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Witnessing + Talking to communities, local authorities, SME’s + academic institutions we developed ComPass as a guide to activating place projects.

The research and development work of the 2011 – 2016 EUFP7 project TURAS (Transiting towards Urban Resilience And Sustainability) on the ComPass guidelines now is housed in the Horizon 2020 Project Oppla

Uses of this project:

Even though communities are active, their success in activating place projects with their local authority varies. There is a lack of shared information of process success and roadblocks, which previous communities have encountered. Therefore for new project ideas, each community is coming to the process without the benefit of knowledge of previous endeavours and without the benefit of a clear appropriate process they should follow.

Bridgefoot Street Pop Up

Who should be involved?

green spaces department; community development department; planning and development department; urban regeneration department

community group; investor; professional experts; local or regional authority

underused urban site & building; brownfield development site; dense inner city

expert knowledge; local knowledge; monetary investment; community trust; public institutional set-up; personnel time


The knowledge of “navigating the system” to activate place projects on existing underused urban space is often tacit or in “silos”: There is a lot of local knowledge on spatial agency, but it usually is somewhat fragmented and knowledge assets are contained within different groups. Processes need to be legible and practical for all actors involved.


  • ComPass provides a guide for communities on the process of activation of place projects on vacant or underused places in the city, which is intended for use by communities who have place projects they wish to activate.
  • To bring together knowledge on spatial agency -held separately within the local authority, practitioners and communities of interest-, a “navigation guide” is created that consolidates the different kinds of knowledge from local authorities, practitioners and communities of interest. The Guide reveals The HOW to navigate the process of activating place projects by drawing local knowledge from a diverse range of communities of interest, the local authority, and practitioners and gives an overview of the steps, sometimes iterative, that communities have taken. It is “mapping” the “course of navigation”.
  • Main outcome: process innovation, knowledge/data, stakeholder integration, community empowerment.


Navigation guide presentation (Prezi)

ComPass video