Post pandemic public spaces

The Post Pandemic Public Spaces documentary series is about the future of our public spaces and the influence of the pandemic. The documentary was produced as part of the the work of the Urbanism faculty at TU Delft.

Eight researchers discuss their views on the future of our public spaces in a series of interviews. The researchers walk the streets as they describe the lack of accessibility and unequal access to public space. The video is subtitled in English.

This video focuses on mobility. Other videos focus on behaviour, challenges, and the final one concludes the discussion.

For more post pandemic videos, go to the TU Delft webpage

We can all agree that the COVID 19 crisis has affected everyday life. It has forced inhabitants to change their routines and thus the use of public spaces and amenities.

A cityscape with a foreground of parkland and woodland.

From the abstract

The fourth episode of the series presents the topic ‘Inequality’. In line with last episode, it is important to remember how mobility relates to (in)equality. The measurements taken during COVID-19 outbreak, such as social distancing and staying home, has shown that not everyone has or can have the same pattern, and/or is able to have equal patterns.

Public spaces in different neighbourhoods have different qualities. The pandemic has shown that not everyone lives under the same conditions and has equal access to public spaces. Distances to recreational (green) spaces can differ greatly, there is unequal safety along the routes. Places to sit and stay and relax are also not equal.

Public space is subject to power structures and the distribution of resources, and are unequal almost by definition, and consequently access isn’t available for everyone.

Urban design and the wellbeing of older adults

The photo shows the facade of an old red brick building with an assortment of graffiti and tags. There is a doorway and in front is a rubbish bin

Keeping mobile and active whether walking, riding or using a mobility device, is essential for staying connected and maintaining good mental health. The effect of poorly designed and maintained environments has a negative effect on the mental wellbeing of older adults. If getting out and about is restricted because the environment is not accessible, or perceived as unsafe or unpleasant, this can lead to depressive symptoms.

The title of the article is, Neighbourhood Amenities and Depressive Symptoms in Urban-Dwelling Older Adults.

Gillepsie, LeVasseur, and Michael conclude their findings “support public policy to promote neighbourhoods with diverse amenities as a means to support mental health in older adults”.

The lack of diverse amenities within the neighbourhood was associated with depression among those older adults with greater mobility. Among those older adults with low mobility, we observed no difference in depression by amenity diversity.

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