westley design | inclusive landscape architecture

St James Park Southampton Spaceshaper

Trialling of CABE Space Children's Spaceshaper and Spaceshaper

The challenge

Southampton City Council was working with an active friends group on the regeneration of this suburban park. They required a method of establishing how the diverse resident population felt about their environment and how they would go about prioritising change for inclusive benefit in the light of an imminent program of investment focussed on play. Whilst many objective, statistical means exist to measure certain objective criteria in public open space, there was no technique available to measure and record quality and the more subjective, experiential aspects from the diverse viewpoints of different stakeholders. Public open space managers and designers and stakeholders need this information in order to evaluate and improve the spaces and argue for funding to support and preserve quality.

What we did

Westley Design worked with park friends, local residents of the area and children together with local government officers and councillors to explore how people felt about their park and to create a vision for how it might be inclusively improved in future. In particular this focussed on addressing play and how it interfaced with amenities for both the older and younger generations.  In his role as a CABE Enabler, Mike Westley, was part of a project team who developed the Spaceshaper Tool and is an accredited Spaceshaper Facilitator.

The result

The Spaceshaper workshops helped to generate a clear picture of how local people felt about their park. The exercise led directly to a prioritised investment program of physical and management changes for the park.

Childrens SpaceshaperSpaceshaper facilitationChildrens Spaceshaper activity

All material © Westley Design 2008