PARK OF THE FUTURE | MIT Senseable City Lab & The City of laval
Photo credit: MIT Senseable City Lab
Project by: MIT Senseable City Lab & The City of laval
Location: Laval, Canada
The city of Laval and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Senseable City Lab (SCL) announce the publication of the Senseable City Guide to Laval, a compendium of six bold preliminary concepts from graduate-level students of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology exploring novel experiences with regard to the “park of the future”. The publication is an initial step of a 3-year research collaboration between the SCL and the city of Laval as part of the latter’s ongoing work to develop a human-centered, innovative, and resilient downtown area.
The graduate students were tasked with imagining new experiences in the future park of the Carré Laval, a former quarry located in Laval’s downtown area, to be transformed into a mixed-use innovation district. In this context, the park is explored as a space at the junction of work and leisure, as researchers conceive novel experiences that will attract people from all walks of life. “The park of the future is a place where digital technologies augment the physical space to enable novel work and leisure experiences,” explained Simone Mora, Senior Post Doc within SCL.
In the spring of 2020, several Laval stakeholders and residents took part in meetings with SCL researchers to help the graduate students hone their thoughts on what 21st-century park use in Laval could become. "The park of the future is first and foremost an accessible and innovative public space. What we are striving for is, above all, to use audacity and technology to offer richer and more meaningful human experiences. The Senseable City Guide to Laval is a starting point in this regard," mentioned Stéphane Boyer, Vice-Chairman of the Executive CommitteeCity Councillor for the Duvernay–Pont-Viau district. Laval will therefore invite residents, stakeholders, and technology partners to become actively involved in an exciting and inclusive public process in which people will want to take part.
“We are very happy to be working with the city of Laval to start imagining together the future of public spaces as hubs for innovation,” stated Carlo Ratti, Director of the MIT Senseable City Lab. "Feedback loops and participative processes are crucial for designing the city of tomorrow. We look forward to engaging in further discussions with Laval's local communities.”