When we build our landscape around places to go, we lose places to be.
– Rick Cole
The landscape of our society is made up of origins and destinations. We travel with haste, from one place to the next, focused on the endpoint, with little regard for what’s in-between. At home, we are the loving family member; at work, we are the productive, contributing member of a team; out socialising, we are the charismatic, fun-to-be-around friend; but who are we when we are between these places? Devoid of our normal identities, we become defined as one of many; a passenger, a driver, a pedestrian. Marc Augé describes these in-between spaces as non-places. Stripping us of our individual identities, disengaged from social interaction and without any significant history, non-places instil a sense of isolation and detachment from our normal lives.
What if we could reimagine these non-places to incite individuality, to encourage social engagement and to be built on the fabric of a rich history? A movement within contemporary urban design focuses on transforming the unused and dead spaces of our cities into vibrant, living spaces for the community. Built by the communities in which they serve, these places represent the character and stories of their members and cultivate an environment which allows for spontaneous social interaction.