menu

Detroit Transforms Its Abandoned Homes Into Colorful Bus Stops

Detroit Transforms Its Abandoned Homes Into Colorful Bus Stops
culture

Local artists use old doors for good in this urban revitalization effort.

Rachel Pincus
  • 17 april 2014

Cities in decline often produce a wealth of salvageable material from the rubble of their crumbling buildings. Detroit’s abandoned houses have made headlines and produced a wonderfully sad photo series, and now, instead of just being mined for copper by thieves, their battle-worn doors are being refashioned for a new transit-related project that combines public art and social design. They will now become part of a series of bus stops with the goal being to improve the image of Detroit’s public transit system while, in an upcoming ‘version 2.0,’ implementing modern amenities like GPS markers and solar panels.

According to the Detroit Community Design Center at the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, an urban design project such as this can actually change many of the messages communicated by the streetscape:

 

Bus stops advertise the transit system to the public. A stop that looks dirty or neglected, or whose waiting passengers look hot, cold, wet, confused or vulnerable sends a devastating message: you’re lucky you don’t have to ride the bus. The use of public transportation is typically read as being without means; that the people, place and service of public transportation are at best, secondary considerations in the economic and environmental operations of the city. We wanted to change that.

By allowing residents to re-engage with their environment and local artists to expose their art to the public, the bus shelters will “provide an opportunity for riders and residents to create a space of their own making; a choice that will ultimately comment on the state of transportation and the quality of the public realm.”

busstop.JPG

Conceived of by Craig Wilkins, the lightweight structures may seem like a fairly superficial step towards a revitalized Detroit, but their life extends outside their immediate appearance and functionality. As described on the website for the A’ Design Award, which the project has recently received, the project’s designer is mostly interested in “design, research, and education.” With the possibility of installing these bus shelters throughout the city, the project can grow and change faster than the city’s deteriorating bureaucracy currently envisions.

A’ Design Awards

Sources: 100 Abandoned Houses, The Atlantic Cities, Detroit Free Press

Trending

Bicycle Hotel In Norway Makes Commuting A Breeze

Design & Architecture
Technology Yesterday

Umbrella Tells You Whether It's Needed Before You Go Out

Opus One was designed by former Samsung engineers and offers a weather forecast via the flashing LED on top

Sustainability Yesterday

Biocomposite Skateboard Provides An Eco-Friendly Ride

The Uitto is an eco-friendly skate deck crafted from Norwegian wood fibers

Trending

Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Work Yesterday

Hyatt Honors Travelers With A 3D-Printed Statue Contest

The hospitality wanted to celebrate the people who go everywhere for work and make sure their tasks were not forgotten

Syndicated Yesterday

High-Tech Replica Brings Prehistoric Art Within Reach

A £48m recreation of the Lascaux Caves in France will let visitors experience the unique place for the first time in decades

Related Expert

Hunter Jensen

Mobile, Geolocation, Interaction

Entertainment Yesterday

Tripod Lets You Make Snapchat Videos Hands-Free

The Camkix kit lets you record wirelessly from any angle

IoT Yesterday

GE Develops An Alexa-Enabled Table Lamp

The first in a line of interconnected home products will integrate Amazon's voice-activated system for smarter home living

Advertising Yesterday

Spotify Mines User Data To Create A Global Ad Campaign

The series of billboards relays the feelings that people express through listening to music

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Retail 2017
Transformation Strategies For Customer-First Business
NEW

PSFK Op-Ed Yesterday

Why Personalization Is The Key To Customer Satisfaction

Andrew Blackmon of The Black Tux shares how the company is using machine-learning models to streamline the fitting process

PSFK Labs december 1, 2016

Retail Spotlight: Home Depot Reimagines How Employees Conduct Tasks

The home improvement retailer puts the customer first by initiating local fulfillment centers and simplifying freight-to-shelf inventory management

Food Yesterday

What Material Research In Beirut Bodes For Our Waste Crisis

Might building furniture and lights out of rose petals and coffee grounds point to more sustainable modes of living, as seen in Beirut Design Week?

Social Media Yesterday

This Collar Wants To Be The Bridge Between Human-Dog Communication

Inupathy claims to be world's first dog emotion visualizer

Retail Yesterday

Commerce Expert: Why Brick-And-Mortar Shopping Can’t Be Replaced

Erin Armendinger, SVP of bio, explains the physical need of customers to experience certain products before buying

Fashion Yesterday

Basquiat-Inspired Fashion Line Supports Emerging Talent

The late artist's estate has collaborated with New York label alice+olivia on a new range of designs

Gaming & Play Yesterday

Fidgeting Tools Designed To Help Creative Minds Focus

The DIDGETS Collection helps those who have anxiety or are restlessly moving to focus while they are working

PSFK EVENT

FUTURE OF RETAIL 2017:
Conference Built Around Report Launch
BUY TICKETS

Children Yesterday

Helpful Robot Teaches People Of All Ages How To Code

The Root has coding expertise designed to benefit a wide range of people

Home Yesterday

Sharing Service Connects Directors With Film Locations

Finding affordable places to film can be difficult, so GETset was designed to help creators easily find good locations

Technology Yesterday

Adobe Is Teaching Machines To Copy Your Artistic Style

A new research project called Stylit uses a camera to mimic a drawing and reproduce the strokes digitally

No search results found.