Lafayette's Mayor Joey Durel has announced today that Lafayette has been picked as a finalist for the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Challenge.  The point of the competition is to inspire American cities to come up with innovative ideas to improve lives and solve issues.

Lafayette’s idea, called "Level Up, Lafayette", would aim to help people create and play a range of games to benefit the community.

Lafayette is now in the running for a five million dollar grand prize along with one of four one million dollar prizes.  Mayor Durel says,

“We are thrilled that Lafayette is a finalist in the Mayors Challenge.  Lafayette has a long history of innovation that has defined our community’s success.  This opportunity—a challenge that was specifically designed to encourage cities to be creative problem solvers—was a natural fit for Lafayette.  Ideas Camp will provide our team a great opportunity to work with cities across the country facing similar challenges to seed Lafayette’s next big innovation.”

A team from Lafayette will go to the Bloomberg Ideas Camp later this month were more work will be done to refine their ideas. Winners will be announced next Spring.

James Anderson, director of the Government Innovation program at Bloomberg Philanthropies, had this to say “Congratulations to Mayor Durel and the City of Lafayette for becoming a Mayors Challenge finalist. The response to the Mayors Challenge was extraordinary: bold and innovative ideas were submitted from every corner of the country. We look forward to welcoming the Lafayette team to Ideas Camp.”

There were four criteria that finalists were rated on.  There were:

  • vision/creativity
  • ability to implement
  • potential for impact
  • potential for replication

Mayors of U.S. cities with 30,000 residents or more were eligible to compete in the Mayors Challenge.