Tactical urbanism 49

A chance to contribute to a city reinventing itself is a chance to contribute to positive change and growth.

A response to something extraordinary

The Festival of Transitional Architecture (FESTA) is a public event over four days that aims to engage with the city of Christchurch by exploring urban regeneration. The festival intends to make Christchurch feel like a city again – buzzing with animation excitement and life.

FESTA is a response. After Christchurch’s devastating earthquake in 2011, the initiative seeks to respond to the conditions and possibilities of a unique and extraordinary situation. After 80% of the inner city was demolished the festival is a celebration of a city reinventing itself.

Transforming public spaces

During the festival, the city of Christchurch needed temporary installations to transform their public spaces into engaging ones. Where ideas about the city might be fixed would be considered alongside how it functions. The idea of “tactical urbanism” would be utilised to create people-spaces that engage the local community.

A FESTA wayfinding system needed to contribute to the vision of the future city. In 2014 Diadem was offered and accepted the sponsorship opportunity by Christchurch City Council (CCC) (FESTA, a 4 day event). The brief was to develop a temporary wayfinding system that would provide a directional signs to each event, workshop, art installation, toilets and food etc. throughout Christchurch City.

Forms and structures

Our involvement included designing concepts for wayfinding forms and structures for the hubs and the FESTA sites to help people navigate their way through the temporary development. We worked with CCC and Generation Zero on the project. Diadem designed the temporary wayfinding system around the limitations on budget and the fact that the system would be erected by Ground Zero volunteers using only existing structures around the city. This was limited as 80% of the streetscape infrastructure no longer existed so we had to creative.

Inside of a constrained budget and very tight timeline, Diadem managed the procurement, manufacturer and installation of the Temporary Wayfinding signage system. Successfully creating a beautiful, colourful, engaging solution. Sometimes these temporary ideas work so well; they become permanent fixtures.

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