We asked ourselves, ‘Where are the places to stop? Where are places of public creative expression? Where can people engage with each-other and the city?’
To address these questions, community engagement and involvement included:
- 2x community ‘art jams’ to embellish the Pause Pods
- a series of mini-activations held at the Pause Pods
- a craft afternoon with local children at out-of-hours school care. Participants were asked to create mini paper models of the pause pods that captured their vision for future Bankstown. These models were collected from willing participants to be embedded into the concrete pause pod moulds – imbuing them with a ‘soul,’ so they’re not just lumps of concrete.
In partnership with the Bankstown Arts Centre, Cred selected a different artist for each of the five locations to animate the pods in a way that reflects the character and place identity of the centre. Two pods were painted during ‘art jams’ – mini live events, where the local community participated in the painting.
Strategic locations were chosen for Bankstown’s Pause Pods
Great design was a key feature in bringing the Pause Pods to life, with RDO Architect Rob Harper working closely with a manufacturing company to ensure their shape maximises human comfort through curved corners and chamfered edges – making them friendly (and safer) than your average square bollard.
Armed with life-sized cardboard models of the Pause Pods, Cred and RDO shortlisted a set of locations, testing distances and arrangements and selected strategic locations in collaboration with Council.
It has been four years since we installed the Pause Pods which can be found in five different locations in Bankstown, including at the Bankstown Arts Centre, on North Terrace, South Terrace and Chapel Street, providing a sense of delight for pedestrians’ as they journey through the CBD. We have had continuous positive feedback and updates about them being used by people of all ages to sit, meet, wait, chat, eat lunch, take a break and play.
The intervention is subtle and intimate, with a rich and meaningful result. It is affordable, adaptable and potentially ongoing, thanks to the re-paintable concrete surfaces – allowing Pause Pods to become a dynamic art installation for Bankstown’s streets.
The sketch below captures this evolution of a street as a moving place to a place which invites people to stop and pause.
The Pause Pods are playful, programmable and durable, and can be relocated as streets shift and change. They can also be rolled out in any town centre that is in need of some colour, activation and welcoming.
Council have plans to repaint the Pause Pods, using different artists, and to move them around the city as it continues its transformation into the future.