As part of my work on Vision Zero Chicago for MUSE Community + Design, I designed “Design a Street” – a hands-on, interactive engagement activity to make the abstract, but critical concepts of road design and traffic safety fun and engaging for all ages. At the same time, this activity educates and recruits residents as advocates for safer streets.
I hand-drew dozens of streetscape elements such as bike lanes, bioswales, stop lights, crosswalks, and bump-outs, plus cars, planters, trees, and custom landmarks for each of the neighborhoods we engaged with. The pieces sit on magnetized boards and come with a separate sign explaining what each element is!
While a big hit with kids, even adults enjoyed moving the pieces, seeing first-hand how road safety features could be implemented. The activity provoked numerous conversations and helped dispel myths and stereotypes, often nudging participants to better understand road design, and perhaps helping them see their streets in a new way!