Street Furniture Australia, with support from the ACT Government, has begun the Discovery phase for #WodenExperiment, a six-month furniture installation to activate Woden Town Square in Canberra. Members of the community, local businesses and politicians gathered to discuss the project and share their experiences of the square at a workshop held in March. Around 40 participants brainstormed issues and opportunities for the square around Retail Experience, Community Involvement, Comfort and Amenity, and Wow Factor. “It was exciting to see so many people filling the room, with a great mix of people from community, business and local government creating an atmosphere of high energy and interest,” says Diana Hill, Manager Capital Works – Urban with Transport Canberra and City Services. “As a result many great ideas about issues and opportunities were discovered …
Sydney Recharges at Future Street
Driverless shuttles, park benches that charge your phone and bins that send alerts when they’re full – the Future Street showed smart cities are within our grasp today.
The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA), Internet of Things Alliance Australia (IOTAA) and Smart Cities Council Australia New Zealand (SCCANZ) built the street of the future at Circular Quay on Alfred Street, in front of Customs House in October 2017.
Place Design Group, as the design partner, curated Green, Complete and Smart Street zones to imagine the best placemaking outcomes for street designs of the future.
“We found that people were using the seats, tables and platforms for work and social gatherings. Build it and they will come, is a good lesson for providing more infrastructure like this in our streets,” says Chris Isles, Executive Director of Place Design Group.
“We built a street, and not just a physical street, but a social street, where people were propping up their laptops working on tables in the fruit grove, sitting at picnic tables enjoying lunch or just casually enjoying the green space.”
In the Smart and Complete Streets, PowerMe charging tables by Street Furniture Australia were a hit with the owners of thirsty devices, with sometimes three or four phones, tablets or laptops plugged into the one unit.
“We saw a real mix of people using the PowerMe tables – friends chatting either side, both phones charging, office workers coming down for breaks. People in suits charging and chatting on their phones at the same time. Little kids absorbed in games while their parents checked out the Tesla electric car,” says Marketing Manager June Boxsell.
“At Garema Place during last year’s pop-up park, #BackyardExperiment, we noticed local street and homeless people plugging into the GPO to charge their phones. PowerMe is a more comfortable solution – we hope it will provide flexibility for everyone to enjoy public places.
“And with wireless charging on the way for iPhone and already available with some Android devices, soon you’ll just need to place your phone on the tabletop, no need to BYO cable.”
The PowerMe tables were integrated with a prototype modular seating system, ARIA, a ‘Lego set’ for placemakers designed to make it easy to configure furniture for the community.
“Custom furniture is popular among the designers we work with as it allows landscape architects to better craft the user experience of a place, making it more responsive to the needs of those who work, live and play there each day,” says Boxsell.
“Our mission is to bring lasting enjoyment to public places, and this makes that so much more accessible for public spaces and projects where design time and budget is limited.”
In the Green Street, a lush wall and generous canopy of trees by Andreasons Green sheltered picnic tables paired with moveable Forum Seats and Cafe Stools to create a relaxed, protected area popular with the lunchtime crowd.
Lighting by WE-EF illuminated the park at night, catching the pears in the trees and making the place feel safe after dark.
To manage waste in the pop-up, garbage and recycling eBin prototypes were in action, equipped with sensors to monitor fill levels and alert custodians in case of a fire.
“The eBins include some game changing technology for public health, operations efficiency and the cleanliness of our cities,” says Boxsell.
The Street Furniture Australia ARIA seating system, PowerMe wifi charging table and eBin will officially launch in 2018.
Future Street was part of the 2017 International Festival of Landscape Architecture: The 3rd City, held in Sydney in October.
Street Furniture Australia has used empathy interviews, personas, observations, journey mapping and other user-centred research techniques to focus #WodenExperiment on the community. These qualitative methods unearth rich detail about the lives and needs of people who use Woden Town Square. The aim is to inform the design of the six-month installation with a “community first” philosophy. “We employ user-centred design techniques in the making of our furniture, and #WodenExperiment now offers the opportunity to apply this methodology to public places,” says Mark Armstrong, Street Furniture Australia Design Director. “One of the challenges of public space is meeting the needs of people from many different walks of life. Through our empathy interviews and observations of the town square we have come up with six key personas to design for. “The personas …
ABC Radio Canberra’s Jolene Laverty chats with Street Furniture Australia’s June Boxsell about #WodenExperiment on Drive. The following is a transcript of the program, which aired on Wednesday April 4, 2018. JL. The social project that has increased foot traffic in Garema Place by 200% is going to be replicated in Woden. June Boxsell is the Design and Marketing manager of Street Furniture Australia and she runs these programs, hi June. JB. Hi there, thank you for having me. JL. Thank you for joining us. So it’s called the #WodenExperiment and it’s based on the very successful #BackyardExperiment, which was held in Garema Place a few years ago. Can you just take us back to 2016 and remind us what the Garema Place experiment was? JB. The #BackyardExperiment was a …
Assistant Minister for Cities and Digital Transformation Angus Taylor will officially open Future Street at 9am on October 12th, in front of Sydney’s Customs House on Alfred Street in Circular Quay. All are invited to attend. Street Furniture Australia will contribute to the installation, which is sponsored by the Australian Government, with innovations for a smarter, more connected city and its people. Designed by the Place Design Group for the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA), Internet of Things Alliance Australia (IoTAA) and Smart Cities Council Australia and New Zealand (SCCANZ), Future Street will imagine how our city streets could better enhance urban lives. Conversation starters include self-driving vehicles, with a range of street, landscape, IoT, utilities, transport, urban design and placemaking technologies and ideas in action from product partners Street Furniture Australia, WE-EF Lighting, …
Street Furniture Australia will proudly contribute furniture prototypes to the Future Street installation in Sydney this October, with ideas set to enliven your lunch break, outdoor meeting or commute. The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA), Internet of Things Alliance Australia (IOTAA) and Smart Cities Council Australia New Zealand (SCCANZ) will build the street of the future at Circular Quay on Alfred Street, in front of Customs House, from October 12 to 15. Place Design Group is leading the design and build of the project, which forms part of the 2017 International Festival of Landscape Architecture: The 3rd City. A four-day celebration will showcase a range of street, landscape, IoT, utilities, transport, urban design and placemaking technologies and ideas, including self-driving vehicles, with the Australian Government recently announced as a …
Alex Crowe is a young landscape architect, part of the AILA Fresh NSW project team delivering the AMP Activation for the 2017 International Festival of Landscape Architecture: The 3rd City in Sydney. The design team includes Alex Crowe, Michael White, Anina Carl, Ashley Darby and Faid Ahmad, partnering with Street Furniture Australia, AMP Capital, WE-EF LIGHTING, Andreasens Green and Blue Scope Steel to create a daytime hangout and evening event space. Furnished by Street Furniture Australia, the activation runs from October 11 to 15, between the AMP Towers on 33 Alfred Street and 50 Bridge Street, Circular Quay. Enter via Philip Street to see the efforts of the AILA Fresh NSW team and be inspired by young people imagining the future city. You’re currently involved in a ‘space activation installation’ by AILA Fresh NSW. What …