Design Trust Futures Studio – Play is for the People
Yi Pei Square Playground (2018)
Due to the densely populated buildings of the surrounding area, Yi Pei Square Playground naturally becomes a gathering space. The activities of the people show a unique sense and feeling of community. For example, the local elderly gathers here every day to talk and to chat; while children and parents pass through after school and often play for a while before going back home.
The design process focuses on public participation. We allowed children to propose some park design concepts and collected opinions of the neighbourhood. In doing so, they become an important resource for our park design and provided us with invaluable input, including commenting on the kind of furniture seats they wish to see in the future park.
The designer team collected opinions through three public engagement sessions, and have established connections with the neighbors. The team has also distributed questionnaires at Yi Pei Square in order to understand specific needs of the residents. Community workshops were held to allow children to participate in park designs; they drew out the parks they had in mind; designed collective games on the playground floor with simple tapes; and came up with their ideal parks with clay, demonstrating their love of games as well as informing the designers of the public’s own ideas. All in all, they will become an important source of inspiration for the park’s design, with some of the park facilities collectively designed as part of an onsite exhibition. The 1:1 prototype as part of the exhibition will also be available for future users to try out.