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(en) US, Philadelphia, Thedefenstrator #30 - Lancaster AVenue Autonomous space LAVA

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Fri, 13 Aug 2004 06:02:48 +0200 (CEST)

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LAVA is the Lancaster AVenue Autonomous space, "soon" to open its doors
to the world as a community center for radical media and politics.
It all started with the Space Exploration Team, a loose collective
composed of individuals interested in finding a place for a radical
community center in Philadelphia. We had been scoping out
properties around the area that could fulfill our vision -- a three
story building with a storefront located on a main street, large
enough to house several organizations and projects. On October
17, 4134 Lancaster, a three story building with a storefront
located on a busy street, large enough to house several
organizations and projects, went up for auction at the sheriff's tax
lien sale. For a healthy bid of $15,100 we snagged it. By
December 14 we were able to raise, from generous people like
you, the entire $15,100 necessary to buy the building.

Since then it's been a struggle, a seemingly unending uphill
battle to replace termite damaged floors, walls, running electricity
and plumbing from scratch. Financial ruin, burnout and
stagnation nearly did us in. In the meantime, the defenestrator
newspaper and Radio Volta moved their operations to the space
carving out functional spaces within the building. And now after
3 years of hard work and long winters, we seem to be on the very
cusp of opening our doors to the world. Despite all odds we're
closer than ever.

What will be at LAVA? We want to build a reliable, accessible
physical space from which our groups could welcome
participants and community members. LAVA will be a public
gathering space for film screenings and classes; office space for
small and startup organizations; and publicly accessible spaces
such as a library, a darkroom, gallery space, a computer lab that
would include web access and audio-video editing equipment.
Most importantly, we share the vision of a space that will
embody the values of collective management, open access, and
sharing of knowledge and resources, a space where many of us
who are organizing for another world can fuse our ideas and our
work with those of people who don't normally intersect with our
circles; a place for radical action to intersect with the public.

Among many other things, the building will house:· a
performance space covering the entire 1st floor. it will also serve
as a space for community classes and workshops, meetings, film
screenings and performances· The Independent Media
Center· Radio Volta (the IMC's internet radio station.
Check them out at radiovolta.org)· the defenestrator - a
bimonthly radical newspaper (defenestrator.org)· Alpha
Labs - a computer lab for public computer access literacy and
education.· a radical literature lending library·
darkroom· printing press

We want you!!! Most of all we want this building to be an
interactive space where those who use it are those who run it. So
despite not being open as of yet, we want your input, your
energy, your involvement! Currently there’s a ton of
work to do and areas to get involved: we need help with
construction (especially people with skills who could give us
advice or help us take on some construction projects), helping
organize the daily operations, on working groups (like the library,
events co-ordination or fundraising) and especially with fund
raising. We still need to raise thousands just to get the
performance area up to code for public events. Don’t be

LAVA holds its general meetings every second Wednesday of the
month 7pm at LAVA, 4134 Lancaster Ave.
"The Defenestrator - a newspaper of refusal and optimism
..... from an anarchist or autonomist tradition, which proposes
a revolutionary transformation of society, the abolition of
property and of all hierarchies and coercive power."

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