We were commissioned by Lambeth Council on behalf of Loughborough Junction Steering Group to shape the spending of a £750k budget comprising £400k from Transport for London, and £350k from Lambeth Council Funding. The constraints of this funding requires it to be spent on capital works and not revenue. The aim of this engagement work was to take ideas for physical improvements to Loughborough Junction, as identified by the Steering Group, and ask the wider community to prioritise these ideas.
We held five events speaking to over 296 people and identifying clear priorities for what people would and would not like to see the money spent on. As always it is just as important to find out what people do not want to see happening as well as what they do want.
The steering group and now developing a series of projects that aim to work with local suppliers to install some of the most popular ideas, well as many as the budget allows.
June - July 2016
The workshops were a great way of ensuring we reached and engaged a younger age demographic in changes that may be happening where they live and go to school, and find out their priorities.
It also created an opportunity to begin a co-design process to create assets that could be used to celebrate the area in both short term (our pop-ups and printed material) and long term (use on bridges).
We decided to incorporate the patterns and lettering, created in the school workshops, into the overall branding for the project. We felt this was the right approach as it embedded the community and history within our aesthetic, and helped the project feel relevant to Loughborough Junction.
People responded very well to the branding. The childlike, hand drawn elements made us more approachable and the patterns were a good curiosity generator and conversation starter. The lettering on top of our folding display stand was particularly effective as it helped people visualise how the lettering on the bridges could have more meaning and community involvement.
By having an exciting, on-street presence at various locations relevant to the scheme we were able to engage in conversations with people and capture their feedback in an informal setting and on their terms.
This approach helped us ensure that we reached a cross section of relevant and representative local people. By positioning ourselves on-street and having curious props and visually interesting displays we encouraged people to want to talk to us. By going to where people are already, we removed barriers to being involved making it easier to reach the ‘hard to reach’. Where possible we used locally sourced materials and fabricators to create our props.
Our community celebration event was designed to draw in as many local people as possible for a fun day with food, music and activities alongside the opportunity to give feedback on the proposals. We felt it was very important to involve local people in the running of the event and all of the elements for the day were provided by local professionals.
By putting local people at the heart of what we were doing it demonstrated that we were involving the community in hosting these conversations which encourage more people to get involved. We provided a free food token to people who provided feedback which also helped!