Edmonton’s Buddy Benches

1 07 2017


The City of Edmonton is hoping more citizens will sit down and chat with a stranger on their new Buddy Benches, which were unveiled Tuesday and will be placed throughout the city.

“It’s for people like me who get lonely when they retire and they don’t have anybody to talk to,” said Dianne Kuntz, whose grandchildren came up with the idea.

The benches are part of a pilot project partnership with CITYlab and were unveiled at Churchill Retirement Residence on Tuesday.




Other Edmonton works –
Yellow is for Hello/  The Friendship Bench – http://www.metronews.ca/news/edmonton/2017/03/24/university-hopes-benches-spark-mental-health-discussions-.html


BART Swings (SF)

10 09 2016

“It’s such a ripe environment for some sort of joy or fun or connection to take place, just because it’s such a mundane experience and often seen as a negative thing,” says San Francisco-based artist Hunter Franks. “People see it as slow or noisy or dirty, so it seemed like an ideal place to add some vibrancy and some fun.”

Great work c/o Fast Company – https://www.fastcoexist.com/3063483/would-you-take-a-ride-on-a-swing-on-the-subway/7 

Adelaide Bus Stop Activations

14 12 2015


Supported by Splash Adelaide, 3 art installations will be constructed over a 3 week period at bus stops around the Adelaide CBD. Head down to Stop G3 on Grenfell St and I3 on North Terrace to check out the installations from 11 December


“We are making selected bus shelters in the city into miniature pockets of joy to increase social engagement amongst Adelaidians, and promote the positive spirit of the community by changing the perception of ‘waiting for a bus’ to one which highlights the positive conveniences our public transport system and the people who provide it to us every day.”

Wedding: Perth Transit

25 08 2015


Via ABC Perth – http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-24/perth-couple-say-i-do-on-public-train/6719946?WT.mc_id=Innovation_Local-Perth|TrainWedding_FBP|abc

Perth couple Megan Grant and Michael Hayward’s all-weather surprise wedding ceremony on a metro train carriage last Sunday went off without a hitch. “It’s got a nice long aisle to walk down and lots of windows with natural light and everyone can sit down and we thought — why not?.

(yes, why not, it’s public space!)

Montreal’s Familar Strangers

5 05 2015

A great article showing data about bus user frequencies and the possible social nature of different bus routes.

‘Familiar strangers are people we encounter often, but ignore. Even in enormous cities, our regular routines have us running into them all the time. But while the “concept” of familiar strangers is interesting, it’s rather difficult to quantify. Still, we wondered: is it possible to retrace the steps of an entire city to figure out who met who? Yes — it is.


(Hattip to David)

Feeding Friendships (on buses)

25 11 2014


via popupcity

The Feeding Friendships campaign was developed by marketing agency Mark+  and is targeting the unsocial environment by placing stickers that encourage the passengers to meet the people occupying the seats right next to theirs. This “social experiment” is being conducted in Pelotas, Brazil.

Train Roulette App

18 05 2014

“Sharing personal space with strangers is an unavoidable part of commuting by public transit. And ignoring the passengers around us is a proud and longstanding tradition for American city-dwellers.

But social scientists have begun to investigate whether this is a wasted opportunity….

Collectively, this work suggests that we should consider at least an occasional chat with a random stranger, and that technology, rather than hindering such connections, may be able to facilitate them…..

So what if technology could actually be enlisted to catalyze connections with the strangers around us? An app called Train Roulette, so far only available in Australia, aims to do just that.

Historically, the Internet has connected people who had common interests but were separated by geography. Train Roulette inverts that function: It connects people who may not have anything in common, but are in the same place”

Read the full article via Next City

Download Train Roulette (QUT)

*Thanks to Dave for the link