This year’s Design Indaba have offered up an awesome initiative that encourages designers around the world to uplift and improve their streets, offering R1 million in prize money to the most innovative idea. The ‘Your Street Challenge’ is about seeing the possibilities and potential of urban spaces – thinking creatively to make the streets in your community smarter, safer, healthier and more sustainable. They have already seen the launch of a number of successful projects across SA and the Netherlands, with plans to open it up to yet more cities around the world.
This project echoes that of an international eco urban movement, spurred by the trend of city migration and the fragmented societies that emerge as a result. The Your Street Challenge asked for designers to recognize the needs of the people in the areas they live and come up with simple designs that address these – the kind of thinking that is key to solving the growing urgency of urban issues.
The idea is that creativity can positively inspire people in their experience of a street – working to bring people together, creating a sense of alliance and a thus a healthier society. A great example of this is Violet’s Walk, one of the winning projects in the Cape Town iteration of the Your Street Challenge: theatre-style benches installed across Woodstock by a group of young designers. The project was inspired by an elderly lady named Violet who walks her streets to keep fit and get to know her neigbours.
See the video below to learn more:[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cI10PnlIbQQ&w=560&h=315]