Tactical Urbanism

I was honoured to be asked to deliver a keynote plenary lecture at AIC2019, the conference of the International Colour Association. The conference was held in Buenos Aires, 14 to 17 October 2019.

The plenary lecture focused on the roles of colour and contrast, and the way these can enhance environmental visual literacy. The paper referred to a research project that investigated variations of colour/contrast strategies within the context of pedestrian crossing design.

The research methodology included a survey conducted in two stages in 2018. Participants evaluated a range of colour/contrast interventions that represented a departure from the usual simple white striped pedestrian crossing design. As such, some of the designs represented a form of ‘tactical urbanism’.

The evaluations were conducted using the Delphi technique with a panel comprised of people with expert knowledge of colour research and application. Specifically, delegates at the annual conference of the Colour Society of Australia (Melbourne, 2018) and the annual conference of the International Colour Association (Lisbon, 2018). The colour/contrast strategies featured a range of analogous and contrasting colour designs, and participants were asked to nominate the designs that attracted attention and stood out more. Nominal group consensus was used to quantify the extent to which each colour/contrast strategy attracted more attention and stood out more relative to the other strategies.

The pedestrian crossing designs are illustrated below and the designs that achieved the highest rating were the high chroma dots design, photoluminescent stripes and high chroma contrasting colours.

The next stage of the research is to identify locations to install 1 to 3 of these colour/contrast interventions, and evaluated their effectiveness in situ.

Information about the AIC2019 conference program is available on the conference website.

Information about the International Colour Association is available via this website.

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