How have recent design improvements to the external environment at Paddington Central had an impact on the wellbeing of workers, residents and visitors? Happy City set about finding out. Since British Land bought Paddington Central in 2013, they have transformed it into a thriving community space, in line with their London campus strategy to design great environments inside and out. Improvements include increasing greenery, providing additional social areas, improving wayfinding… Continue reading
A new study has found that a rainbow crosswalk painted by the City of Vancouver is linked to greater trust among strangers. That’s one finding from the Happy Streets Living Lab report, released today. This unique study used Vancouver, Canada, as its laboratory. The goal: to understand how urban design interventions can support wellbeing, belonging and social trust – an antidote to the growing crisis of loneliness in many cities.… Continue reading
Women’s Day got us thinking about many of the leaders who have inspired our healthy, happy city movement: The activism and enduring wisdom of Jane Jacobs. The pragmatic audacity of Janette Sadik-Khan. The brave public advocacy of Jennifer Keesmat, who risks her job by speaking evidence-based truth to power in Toronto. Clair Cooper-Marcus, whose research and ideas flow through all our work on housing. And Eva Kail, who showed us that building a… Continue reading
Early in 2016, the federal government launched a planning initiative for stakeholders to reimagine what Vancouver BC’s iconic peninsula Granville Island could look like. The Granville Island 2040 Plan was a call to set a course for Granville Island’s future and to articulate its shape for the next 25 years. Aimed to address potential for land use options, including the repurposing of Emily Carr University buildings and the potential expansion… Continue reading
The Happy City team hosted an inspiring one-night studio to create sociability-boosting tools for multi-family house design. Sponsored by BC Housing and led by Happy City associate Patricia Rios, the Happy Housing Design Studio invited a roomful of multi-talented planners, designers, developers and also a few wildcards. The fun began when we added markers, tracing paper, snacks, and beverages courtesy of Faculty Brewing. This enthusiastic squad of interdisciplinary super-heroes turned evidence into actions and visual tools to change how housing is designed in the near future.
Preliminary findings will be shared on December 8 at CONNECT-Catalyzing a Social Movement forum by the City of Vancouver and Vancouver Coastal Health at the Museum of Vancouver. The Happy Housing Toolkit and report will be released in March 2017.