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Could windmills power parts of Eastern Market?

Photo courtesy of C.A.N. Art Handworks, by Ryan Schone

A new fundraising campaign combines craftsmanship, public art, and green energy in one of Detroit’s most popular public spaces—Eastern Market. Led by Carl A. Nielbock, founder of C.A.N. Art Handworks, the project would add a wind-powered phone-charging station and a hydro pump windmill at the Market Garden.

In partnership with the Eastern Market Corporation, the wind turbine project needs to raise $25,000 to match a Knight Arts Challenge grant in order to make this vision a reality.

A crowdfunding kick-off is planned for Saturday, January 13 from 10:30 a.m. to noon or 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. at C.A.N. Art Handworks (2264 Wilkins Street near Eastern Market). The group also has a Facebook page for the project.

Carl A. Nielbock
Courtesy of C.A.N. Art Handworks

Once the funding is raised, the group hopes to install the windmills by summer 2018. If more funding comes through, the scope of the project could expand to include other areas of Eastern Market.

According to the website, the project will:

  • “Create groundbreaking new ​windmills that generate energy for a device charging station and reuse stormwater to irrigate crops at Detroit’s Eastern Market.
  • Create functional public art that helps visitors to the Eastern Market visualize the potential of upcycling and green energy production in Detroit
  • Engage Detroiters, students, urban gardeners and others in the fabrication and installation processes and inspire them to further innovate the windmills
  • Be a step towards our bigger vision of generating green energy in Detroit on a large scale using materials and people already within the city to design, build and innovate green energy technology.”

More background about the project can be found here. We’ll update this article with the Patronicity campaign after the launch.