Glasgow Covid-19 Response is a series of projects which have, and are being, drawn up by a variety of authors across multiple media forms.All of these designs and ideas are being generated on a voluntary basis, with some projects developed from a brief we have worked up alongside our collaborators, while other people have responded on their own accord to the specific themes we have focused on.
We fully expect that - as our society’s response to Covid-19 develops over the coming weeks and months - other collaborators will identify new challenges and opportunities that we have missed and that they wish to address. We strongly encourage these types of projects to develop too - we mean to be a guiding hand, initiator, and a platform to host ideas for a better Glasgow.
We are looking for creative responses that come under three key, intertwining categories. These themes are:
1. Developing vacant and derelict land within Glasgow into greenspaces for recreation, growing, contemplation and other outdoor activities.
2. Improving our cycling network throughout the city, providing an infrastructure to allow people to get around the city on two wheels instead of four.
3. Creating green corridors along existing core paths, and building new ones, connecting existing parks together with newly activated vacant and derelict land.
At Lateral North our work primarily focuses on architecture, urban and community planning, and on engaging communities in designing their places and spaces.
However, across our previous projects we have worked with a variety of artists, graphic designers, filmmakers, fabric designers, authors, and other creative individuals and companies. We have found their responses to specific projects to be invaluable in telling community stories.
In this respect, we see this response as no different from our previous projects.
We want collaborators from different backgrounds - even those of you that are reading this and saying ‘I am not a designer’. We want ideas from economists, healthcare workers, community councils, horticulturists, charities and you, the person reading this, about how to make Glasgow a better place.
There is creativity and ingenuity in everyone, and are asking those who can to direct some of theirs towards imagining a better Glasgow.
So, how do you, a ‘Creative Glaswegian’, get involved? We have suggested some ideas below but encourage you to come up with your own as well.
Is there a piece of vacant/derelict land in your community? Why is it vacant? How could it be more productive than the current idle state it is in, providing a function for our Covid-19 world?
Do you have a local park that could be better designed to offer more than it does? Maybe it could have a small portion dedicated to being an urban farm for the local community? Maybe it only has a few seating spaces for relaxing and more benches/seats would mean more people can use the park safely when socially distancing?
As we begin to buy more and more locally, can your community create a series of urban farms to supply local restaurants/cafes/businesses? Where could these urban farms develop? What are the barriers to this happening? How could they be surmounted?
Due to lockdown do you live on, or know, a street (or series of streets) that is much wider than is necessary for the reduced car numbers. Could some of these streets be given back to cyclists and pedestrians? Could ‘green elements’ provide a clear definitive line between pedestrian/cycle routes and those being traversed by other types of vehicles?
Can we pedestrianise a series of streets throughout Glasgow, making the city more walkable? If so, which streets would you pedestrian and what other activities could take place within the city as a result?
Can we expand the publicly available bike-sharing initiative across the city? Where would bike stations be positioned if that were implemented?
Is there a Glasgow heritage tour you can do by foot or by bike, all the while socially distancing from others? Is there a map that can be designed and taken with you on a daily walk?
These are some of our ideas, however we are happy to explore others, and how you could respond creatively to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Get in touch with us to discuss your idea here: email@example.com
We have also developed a few resources for you to consider and also highlighted below other inspirations which are publicly available.
- We have provided a series of maps and infographics here showing the surprising amount of vacant and derelict land within Glasgow. You may live close to one of these pieces of vacant and derelict land and think it could be used for something much more productive than looking like an eyesore within your local community. So, what’s your idea?
- We’ve provided a more detailed online map here which you can use to identify which of these pieces of vacant and derelict land are publicly owned. This map also highlights other things such as allotments within Glasgow, parks throughout Glasgow and a few other layers of information.
- Small scale projects to activate vacant and derelict land within Glasgow have been funded by and developed alongside Glasgow City Council through their ‘Stalled Spaces’ initiative which has been going since 2011. The website has a number of past project examples of how communities have developed their spaces while a map highlights all the projects that have taken place throughout Glasgow with a small description on each.
- We have also been monitoring what other communities, cities and countries responses have been to the Covid-19 pandemic with a particular reference to how places are implementing ideas and systems within cities. We have compiled a list of these news articles here. What inspiration can Glasgow take from these?