When used well, good public spaces are able to build a sense of community, improve health and wellbeing, and provide safe meeting areas in a post-COVID area. How can we improve public spaces and encourage people to use them?
We propose an integrated system to take open data on public spaces, enrich it with constant feedback from users of public spaces, and present this data to users and providers of the public spaces. Users will have an app to receive personalised public space recommendations based upon their preferences and provide actionable insights back to providers (councils & governments) based upon what can be improved about each public space.
Providers can use this feedback to assess how public spaces are being used, how to improve existing public spaces, and how to provide new public spaces to answer unmet requirements.
Public spaces are identified by QR codes. Accessing this code without the app will lead to the website, where feedback can be provided and the app can be downloaded. Using the app to scan the QR code will lead to the same feedback interface.
The user can search for public spaces through the app, with a list of criteria applied to the search. Some example searches are: parks with playgrounds, sports facilities currently available, or accessible spaces with shaded seating.
Users will also be able to build an anonymous or pseudonymous public profile through the app, with possible gamification based on incentives.
For users who do not use the app nor the QR codes, we suggest feedback kiosks in key amenities for quick and easy feedback. Data from the kiosk is wirelessly sent back to the app backend. The kiosks would present a substantially simplified, robust interface to withstand outdoor weather conditions.