Free Spaces & Children’s Freedom: a new path for children to play outdoors everyday
escola da cidade
In great metropolis, such as Sao Paulo, the majority of children live imprisoned inside the walls of their houses, schools and shopping malls. This is bad both for the children’s physical and social health, as for the city’s life, because a city that is suitable for children is healthier, friendlier, funnier and more democratic, meaning it is better for everybody. We wish for children to be able to play outside everyday. That is why we designed a path connecting squares and schools, selecting commercial and service establishments to create a support net for children and projected playing areas along these paths.
Our study, from the cartography with the children to the analysis of school path’s manuals, has shown us the importance of continuity and of clear signalling. Since the project’s premise is to work with materials that already exist in the city, instead of infantilizing the city itself, we decided to create different combinations of São Paulo’s most recognized paving: the black and white sidewalk floor. For this, we have defined four patterns:
- traditional pattern: indicates the pedestrian path;
- black floor: indicates garage entrances;
- white floor: indicates pedestrian crossing;
- free pattern: fun design to designated playing areas.
In these new areas for kid’s playing, we developed a project with different scales, thus taking advantage of the city’s sidewalks, parking lots and walls. Besides the new pavement design, we sometimes interfered in the topography and created urban furniture designed for playing, to be used by all of the city’s inhabitants.