Looking for a place to spend time in, we decided to create one ourselves. Our park design project combines nature and technology. It is a safe space suited for a variety of activities, a futuristic oasis amid busy traffic lines.
To start with, our team started to organize meetings to discuss all of our ideas. During our debates, there were underlined the main categories for the future project. We’ve looked through all of the possible research areas and decided to focus on the key unit Street Safety/City for all as it is more relevant to us by the reason that the problem we found firstly was absence of a place where people could just have some rest, do some sports etc. We’ve discovered this problem during our journeys in our city, which we’d organized before we met and we do know how we could create some solutions for it.
Parks in big cities are essential, as they have been proven to decrease stress and help socialization within local communities. Citizens need spaces to spend time outside with their friends and family. Unfortunately, most of the parks in our area are often poorly organized and equipped. This problem can be defined as lack of infrastructure in existing recreation areas.
The goal we set for ourselves was to create a well-organized place with cultural and recreational facilities suited for meeting friends, doing sports, relaxation, and entertainment.
As the main part of our investigation, we explored all existing rest areas in our city (parks, squares) to identify their advantages and disadvantages. We developed criteria based on previous data and conducted a field observation to outline key necessities. We also looked into international projects and general rules of park design. Then we chose a space in the center of our city with opportunities for renovations.
We created an interview we sent to 8 different experts from different countries in the fields of urbanism and architecture and we received one answer from a Russian expert who gave us feedback on our criteria for the Central Park of the city. It helped us to understand better important aspects to take into consideration when planning a park.
We also wanted to understand how people use the parks and their needs and wished. Therefore we created a questionnaire for our target public (mainly citizens aged 14-23, school and university students) and we managed to collect 98 answers.
The main results of our research:
- The need (frequency of park visitation — usually at least once in a month, and purposes— to communicate with friends, go for a walk and get to another place)
- Common problems of parks (poor lighting, lack of safety or facilities)
- Criteria for our future park (Accessibility, Mobility, Lighting , Infrastructure, Zones, Security, Meaningfulness, Eco-friendliness)
In response to identified problems we’ve decided to create a design plan for a park of our city, we developed a digital 3D model and we presented it to local government and city community.
1. 3D Park Model Design: we had to follow different steps to create our concept and model for the Central Park of the city.
- Choosing an app and creating the platform of the park. We chose Cinema 4D for its wide range of tools. We found a cadastral map of the park to ensure realistic positioning.
- Outlining and arranging necessary facilities (gazebos, stage, playground, art zone, sport area). The choice was based on the results of the research. We displaced them to provide enough free space, but make them observable.
- Coming up with features of our concept. We made sure it was unique and comfortable. We added WiFi, electric sockets, “invisible” LED tapes, cinema facility. The roads are equipped with a heating system for the winter. The park is powered by solar panels. We also included spaces for art installations, some of them were located on the walls of surrounding buildings. We will let visitors to walk on the lawns, have picnics, walk their dogs, - give them freedom.
- Rendering the model and taking pictures of it.
2. Promotion campaign: our objective was to attract public attention to the created park concept, receive feedback and propose our project to local government.
- We decided to use Instagram as a platform for promotion in response to identified target audience. We presented ourselves and described our creation using visual images and detailed posts. To modernize the park, we named it “Sverdlov Light Park”. It has a triple meaning: the word “light” refers to well illuminated, resembles “lite” - easy to enjoy, rhymes with Hyde (park).
- As a part of our campaign we made a remake of Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen, made a music video starring all members of our group. We also asked students from our school to participate in a flash mob campaign.
- An important part of promotion was submitting our project to the government. We made a presentation to publish our work in a local online portal "Team 800" https://nizhny800.ru/showcase/ that receives civic initiatives and supports and implements projects and ideas for the development of the city. It hasn’t been accepted yet, but we are working on it. We hope that our effort will be taken into consideration.
- A presentation to our Private Lomonosov School community will be held online via Google Meet on the 3 of June 2020. We will share the results of our work with students, school administration and external experts.We are looking forward to demonstrate "Our Ideas Our Initiatives" and to receive a feedback.
Working on this project gave us tremendous experience in communication, especially with each other. We have shown persistence and commitment during these 4 months. We developed our research skills while gathering information about our topic. We received feedback from Misha Maslov, architect, CEO of [MISH] studio (https://www.facebook.com/maslovmish): “The team members approached the creation of necessary functional zones of the park responsibly. Usage of alternative energy sources is impressive. Conceptual design of gazebos is questionable. Overall, the quality of visual materials is quite high.” We met the criteria we outlined for ourselves and achieved the initial goal. We had a lot of fun working on this project together.