Monday, 7 July 2014

advertising space

Via Fast Company, Take Part features the innovative work of a design firm in Slovakia that hopes of inspiring others to come up with creative ways of addressing homelessness. The architects have taken advantage of the typical East European electrified two-sided billboard—known as a hoarding to much of the rest of the world, to create a nook, a shelter for the country's vagrant population with amenities.
The design firm has gifted its basic plan to the world, certain that others could improve upon these ideas for dignified quarters and adapt them to local conditions. Urban-centres in Germany as have these suspended boxes but also on ground level, squat columns for posting bills, and it always occurred to me that such opportunities abound. Elsewhere, spikes like those designed to keep pigeons from perching have been installed in entryways to prevent people from taking up temporary residence and out of sight. The really clever—though possibly ethically-questionable, having the homeless sponsored by big businesses, like some race-car or potentially a corporate zoo—part is that the costs are calculated to pay for themselves from advertising revenue. I really like this idea and it seems to be a good way to create a real transition, a boot-strap from vagrancy. There are far worse ways to try to get a foot up.