Hoodie, goodie, buddy and benches

9 Jul 2009 by Karl Hallam

Cadence's Hoodie, goodie, project, funded by JRF, stemmed from an event about walking and cycling research. We found ourselves making the point that modal shift (cars to bikes and foot) may well have public health and environmental advantages, but there may be bigger less obvious community benefits. Could neighbourhoods with more street activity like walking and cyling (and children's play, for example) be places where young people hanging around on park benches could be seens as a good thing rather than a threat?

The project is based around the investigation of a scenario we developed during local consultations on play, greenspace and youth provision, it goes:

An urban road passes alongside a park. Three youths wearing hoodies are sitting together on the back of a park bench. Someone drives past in a car and sees ‘a gang hanging about in the park who are up to no good'. A passenger on a bus that stops at the local stop notices them and wonders: ‘What are they up to?' Someone cycling through the park hears that they are talking about their A level homework, and a person walking past recognises their neighbour's son and says: ‘Hi'.

This week we went looking for benches to use in a video that we are getting shot for the research ... more on the project and benches to come later.





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