I did some infographics to help communicate some of the more technical concepts of pedestrian infrastructure improvements to a general population at Open Streets events. Volunteers set up a mock-up intersection with bump-outs and used these to aid explanation.
I played around with the point of view of a driver, showing how the presence of pedestrians in the rough visual field was impacted with and without bump-outs.
It also had a parallel fact sheet, to guide volunteers and to provide the information in written form for people who prefer that.
A later Open Streets event included an in-situ mock-up of a mid-block crossing that advocates had been pushing for. I designed a similar illustration for that.
Again, I made a poster with explanation.
My favorite part was creating a cast of characters to populate the sidewalks and crosswalks, and giving them backstories and trajectories. I had a great deal of fun making a poster that represented the Minneapolis I know and experience, one that’s far from the defaults and visual normalization of so many posters and promotional materials.
Within a cheerful palette and very rigid perspective, I played around with skin color, hair styles, hair color, hair loss, and hair coverings, clothing styles. I including people using wheelchairs and canes and phones, people wearing hijabs and saris and backpacks. I included couples walking down the street together, like grey-haired pair in the crosswalk above. I showed parents with children trailing behind, like the mother and two daughters just ahead of them.
I experimented with how people move in public spaces, how we congregate boarding and alighting from busses, who makes eye contact with drivers and who doesn’t, how our body language shifts in ways that can maybe be captured at this angle and with this level of abstraction. I tried to catch the ways we stop mid-walk to chat when we run into a friend, the tension we hold crossing an unpleasant street, the way a group of children walks with a teacher, the protective hand of a grandparent on a shoulder approaching an intersection.
I’d like to, at some point, expand the range of characters. I had only one variety of wheelchair, one type of cane (for visual impairment), and two standard sizes (“adult” and “kid), but no other mobility aids besides bikes, no cargo bikes or bikes with kids, no grocery carts or strollers or wagons or babies, no pets, no benches or streetlife beyond the flow of traffic of all modes.
In the meantime, the basic toolkit I created has been useful periodically, including as a background for a social media recruitment effort to reach potential new Pedestrian Advisory Committee members.