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Starting a Green Restaurant with a Crowd

Starting a Green Restaurant with a Crowd
Culture
Nicko Margolies
  • 12 august 2008

An article in the Washington Post examines a Washington DC project to start a restaurant utilizing a mixture of crowdsourcing and professional experience. Elements is an eatery that is slated to open in 2009, pending the successful establishment of funds and location. Aside from these rather large speed bumps, the idea has been hatched by a community of enthusiastic fans, all with a stake in the business. The prospect of profit sharing is obscured in the passion and supportive nature of the community that the project has created. A well organized website and an occasional meeting has successfully created a concept, a design, the logo and the name of the project. Through this collective process the restaurant already has an intense following of fans even before the doors open. Elements is planning to be a vegetarian/raw foods restaurant with a fully LEED-certified building and is estimated to take over $1 million to get off the ground. The Washington Post reports:

Unlike so many Web discussion sites, there are no angry or insulting posts in the Elements community. Overall, the tone is enthusiastic, passionate and supportive. “We show up even when we’re tired or grumpy or we’ve had the longest day. It’s good company, and you leave feeling really energized,” Blanks says.

That attitude is not unusual for crowdsourcers, Takemoto says. As long as the community is transparent, people become vested.

[via The Washington Post]

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