Outdoor space design

For my 3rd semester project with the theme of

“Communicating Experiences from an Intercultural Perspective”, I created wrote a project paper titled “Creating an Experience-Scape”

Starting point and problem

I was working as a volunteer project assistant identifying needs for trail upgrades and worked with contractors to have 14 foot bridges finished and sign posts and infostands placed. I have also designed a picnic area with nature interpretation. I have taken my starting point in a nature path around a school for youth with dyslexia and learning disabilities.

Map Of Area (1)

What I did

Through interviews and meetings with the landowner as well as studies of literature on learning disabilities and interviews with dyslexic persons, I gained an understanding of the constraints of the design. I investigated the qualities of the landscape and its special features using the experience-scape model by Hird & Kvistgaard and Cresswell’s theory of place, and used them in the nature interpretation.

It was a wish from the project owner and the landowner that we create a space which would also work in winter.

Futhermore, by consulting statistics on the tourists in the area, I was able to incorporate the main needs of German families with children into the design and take advantage of the significant overlap between these otherwise very different target groups.

The solution

As the main target groups would be German tourists as well as adolescents with learning disabilities, I designed an experience-scape where literacy skills were not required to access the information. The proposed concept revolved around digital interpretation of the wildlife, options to learn to recognise the birds and trees in the area via apps such as Warblr by Florence Wilkinson and a picnic table specifically designed to fit with the rugged buildings in the area while at the same time conveying the quality associated with a publicly accessible trail.

Warblr Panel

The project was partly implemented with nature interpretation, trail upgrades, bridges and picnic table, while the digital interpretation is still awaiting funding.

Picnic Table

Below is an example of the nature interpretation signs after collaboration with our graphical designer.

One of the signs made by the inhouse graphic designer after my brief.

One of the signs made by the inhouse graphic designer after my brief.

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