London has a mobile town square that travels around by bike
Cricklewood — which, as you might guess from the name, is in England (northwest London, specifically) — was never really a bustling town on its own. It started as a tiny village, and later became an outpost for travelers and a place where people built large villas. Lately, it’s turned into a bustling neighborhood, but as Pop-up City writes, it still lacks municipal services — there’s “no town hall, no library, no town square, not even a single bench.”
And so Spacemakers and Studio Kieren Jones made a sort of moveable urban feast to substitute — a mobile town square. They built, on the back of a bike, a mini clock tower, which holds benches and stools and umbrellas. Parked and unpacked, it takes up about 107 square feet. People liked it. And they used it, says Pop-up City:
It showed that if Cricklewood actually had a town square the people would come to see film screenings, dog shows, chess championships, tea dances, exhibitions, debates and take part in a DIY library or a DIY sign-making workshop
Just because there’s not a natural place for people in close geographical proximity to gather doesn’t mean they don’t want to. Give people 107 square feet, a bench, and an excuse, and they can turn any space into a rollicking public plaza.
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