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Cards Against Urbanity – What Kickstarter Reveals about Cities

October 1, 2014

Washington D.C. – The tech startup GreaterPlaces and civic outreach group DoTankDC launched the card game Cards Against Urbanity on Kickstarter and met their funding goal within three days. The game, a take on Apples to Apples and Cards Against Humanity, tackles urban planning Q&A with a humorous take on cities and suburbs. The response has been incredible – and reveals a pent up demand for learning how to shape the places we live, work and play.

Because most urban and community planning is really technical and not much fun, GreaterPlaces and DoTankDC decided to create Cards Against Urbanity. Like Apples to Apples & Cards Against Humanity, the game decks have question and answer cards. Players take turns judging a question round; he or she picks a card with a question about cities and neighborhoods. Players then try to appeal to the judge by throwing down “answer” cards from their hand.

The Backstory:
DC-based urban planners Lisa Nisenson and Sarah Lewis wanted to inject some fun into their otherwise technical work in urban planning, a field that all too often slights the very people who live in the communities being planned. The idea emerged at planning conferences where Cards Against Urbanity + Kickstarter came together.

The original goal: get 250 decks in the hands of our architect and planning friends in time for the holidays. The secondary goal: Get publicity for content and investment for Lisa’s tech startup (GreaterPlaces) and Sarah’s DC-based group DoTankDC.

What We Learned Two Weeks In:

• People love old school games – Twenty percent of our pledges have come from Kickstarter and we’ve discovered companies dedicated to printing Kickstarter card and board games.
• People love cities – Very few of the pledges are from architecture and urban planning “usual suspects.” Looking at Twitter profiles, young professionals in cities all over the world are signing up and talking with us about the game and cities.
• People love to join in – We are getting card ideas from social media blasts (@CardsAgainstUrb on Twitter and Cards Against Urbanity on Facebook.

What’s Next Until the Oct 20:
• By request, we are holding Cards Against Urbanity card tournaments: Railvolution in Minneapolis (last week), Mobility Lab Happy Hour (October 8 at IOTA 6-8, 2832 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA), Coalition for Smarter Growth Smart Growth Social, (October 15 6:30-8:30, Eastern Market, Washington DC), Emerging Local Government Leaders conference (October 17 in Portland OR).
• Start thinking of holiday shopping for that architect, planner, engineer, game enthusiast, Realtor, real estate developer, or city-lover in your life. If you have a gift shop, let us know and we’ll print extras.

Visit our Brandfolder page with logos, photos and more information:
Cards Against Urbanity Facebook page & Twitter – @CardAgainstUrb

To profile the team and project, or for more information, contact Lisa Nisenson, [email protected] and/or Sarah Lewis at [email protected].

For more information, please visit


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