Take a quick (and educational) tea break with us! Customers are invited to book in a 10-minute Zoom or Microsoft Teams chat to learn about new products. Presentations are guaranteed no longer than 10-minutes plus Q&A. Choose from: ChillOUT Tree (recommended) Latest Linea additions. Wood Without Worry. Or request a custom presentation. Each participant will receive a T2 gift box (optional). Book by contacting us on firstname.lastname@example.org, or via the button below. Win one of three BLUNT umbrellas Tea Time bookings for Australian customers during August and September will go into a draw for a chance to win one of three BLUNT umbrellas, valued at up to $159. Winners will be notified on 1st October 2022. Image: BLUNT.
White Paper: The Movable Seat
Lively, enjoyable public spaces start with inviting places to sit. Movable chairs offer the option to sit in groups, in pairs, to fly solo, to follow the sun or shade.
Deserted plazas become flexible, accommodating, hospitable, thanks to the introduction of freestanding seats and tables. Places are transformed.
Harvard Yard, Harvard University, Massachusetts. In 2009 the space is a walkway for marching to your next class. The university decides to make it a gathering place where students can mix with the larger community, starting with movable furniture.
“The response was enormously positive,” say Lizabeth Cohen and Mohsen Mostafavi, professors and co-chairs of Harvard’s Steering Committee on Common Spaces.
“Overnight, a vibrant and diverse population was pausing to meet, chat, doze, study, eat, watch performers, or simply sit down.
“The chairs hosted everything from seminar meetings, to the visiting Nobel-laureate capturing a moment of public solitude, to a spontaneous game of musical chairs engaging 70 participants.”
Similar effects are found in Times Square in New York, the city’s Bryant Park in all seasons, and the well established Luxembourg Gardens in Paris. Movable experiments are now popping up in Australian cities too.
Why does movable furniture work so well? Respected urban theorist William H Whyte suggests people appreciate the power of choice.
“If you know you can move if you want to, you feel more comfortable staying put,” he says.
Whyte and his team of researchers studied how people use parks and plazas in New York City in the 1980s. They found that, given the option, people will almost always move a chair before they sit, often just a little and even if it doesn’t seem to accomplish anything.
Perhaps it is a sense of control, of ownership over the seat, that draws people to move it, mused Whyte. You move it an inch forward and sit down and that chair becomes yours.
Do movable seats ‘walk’? Caretakers report that sometimes, yes they do, but losses tend to be minimal, particularly weighed against the value the seats bring to the space, the people they attract. Bryant Park loses just a few of its hundreds of movable chairs a year, and each chair is far less expensive than a fixed bench.
Risk can be mitigated by the level of pedestrian traffic in the area, businesses that also use the space and so become custodians, onsite supervision, overnight security and the weight of the seats. Installing tracking chips is another measure.
Weighed up against the enjoyment the movable furniture brings and the crowds it attracts, the balance is often deemed worth it.
As the populations in our cities grow and urban citizens expect higher quality amenities on their doorsteps, caretakers are investing in public spaces to attract and retain talent and in turn invigorate the economy.
Australians have always celebrated outdoor living, and as our backyards are shrinking public parks are becoming more agile, multi-functional spaces to bring better quality of life and give communities a chance to grow.
The new Forum Seat is designed as a hybrid between a patio and street furniture product, available as fixed or movable to provide the power of choice.
As William Whyte says, “One felicity leads to another. Good places tend to be all of a piece – and the reason can almost always be traced to a human being.”
Whether your felicity is people-watching, being part of the flock, or seeking peace and quiet in a perfect corner, movable seats build flexibility and comfort into a space. It’s your seat, your move.
See more information and specifications for Forum Seat.
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AILA South Australia, the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) and New Architects Group (NAG) packed out The Gallery in Adelaide with 180 landscape architects, designers, architects, students and industry professionals to celebrate the holiday season and new year. Two new Forum seats, a cross between a backyard and street furniture bench, and a Cafe Round table, all powder coated in brilliant Bistro Orange, took centre stage for Street Furniture Australia’s selfie contest. Entries featured a surprising number of matching orange accessories, selfies within selfies, and having a good time kicking up the heels, including: Erica Vidinis from Campbelltown City Council is our winner – congratulations, Erica! Visit Street Furniture’s Facebook page to see all of the entries.
Between lightbulb moments and deep thinking sessions, some 500 delegates of AILA’s 2015 Festival of Landscape Architecture recharged at Street Furniture Australia’s pop-up This Public Life Park. The four-day conference program included the likes of David van de Leer, Natalie Jeremijenko and Jenny B Osuldsen talking all things landscape architecture in Melbourne on October 15 to 18. Visitors kicked off their shoes to enjoy the freshly rolled-out park lawn in Federation Square with SFA sun lounges, cafe tables and Forum seats in the shade of leafy trees planted in brightly coloured rim bins. To celebrate the launch of SFA’s Forum seats, a cross between a backyard and street furniture bench, delegates posted selfies with their favourite Forum to Facebook for a chance to take it home. And the winners are: Special mentions go …