NEW YORK CITY–The first crowdsourcing platform that will be used to create a building’s look and amenities has been launched. The effort, known as Prodigy Design Lab, will be used by Prodigy Network to collect ideas for 17John, the company’s hotel project in Lower Manhattan, and possibly for other projects in the future.

“We have learned that crowdfunding not only democratizes investments, it also makes projects viable that otherwise would not be possible,” says Rodrigo Nino, CEO and founder of Prodigy. “The next step is to create a way in which the crowd can design our crowdfunded projects and this platform is the international stage to showcase the creativity and ingenuity of the community.”

As the world’s first “cotel,” a term coined by Prodigy Network, 17John is slated to be an innovative hotel designed for the modern business traveler where guests can network, share ideas and foster like-minded connections. Participants in the Design Lab will be able to enter contests on three different fronts: collaborative public spaces, guest suites and digital services.

Next to the new Fulton Center—the third-largest transportation hub in Manhattan—andone block away from the new World Trade Center, 17John is an extended stay “cotel.” Individual accredited investors can purchase REPs (Real Estate Participations) of this project for $50,000 each. Once completed, 17John will stand 23 stories high, and have 191 furnished units. Architects plan to combine the building’s existing classic architecture with the modernism of a glass tower to showcase 17John’s extensive views of Manhattan.

The finalist for each of the three categories in the project’s design competition will be determined through online voting that will last for two weeks. Winners will be selected by the competition’s jury of experts, including Nino; Piers Fawks, editor-in-chief and founder of PSFK; Graham Hill, founder and CEO of LifeEdited; and Karim Lakhani, professor of business administration at Harvard Business School and director of the Harvard-NASA Tournament Lab.