Learn About PPS’s Three-Pronged Approach to Drive Change
Case Studies 

Please note that these Hall of Shame nominations were written in a moment in time (most over a decade ago) and likely have since changed or even been transformed. If the above entry is now great, or still not so great, go ahead and comment below on how it has evolved or nominate it as a great place.

*Nominee 

Pop Rocks

Vancouver

British Columbia

Canada

Contributed by 
Project for Public Spaces
 on 
August 31, 2015
December 22, 2017

What makes it Great?

Why it doesn't work?

In the summer of 2012, as a part of the VIVA Vancouver program, a temporary installation called Pop Rocks helped turn a busy street in downtown Vancouver into a popular meeting spot for relaxation and play. With help from AFJD Studio and Matthew Soules Architecture, the installation consisted of large boulder-shaped pillows, patches of astroturf, and multiple umbrellas alongside the road. The theme of sustainability was maintained throughout the project, and the soft shapes were made entirely out of recycled post-consumer and post-industrial materials that were sourced from the Vancouver metro area. Detailed inscriptions on the structures also helped convey their environmental benefits to users.

The overall aim of the Pop Rocks project was to reclaim a downtown roadway as a place for pedestrians to have serendipitous experiences. The comfortable pillows gave visitors an opportunity to engage with the installation in a variety of ways, from sunbathing and socializing to napping, eating, and playing. Pop Rocks has since been relocated to a new destination outside the University of British Columbia’s Koerner Library so that it can be enjoyed and explored by more Vancouverites. 

Access & Linkages

Comfort & Image

Uses & Activities

Sociability

How Light?

How Quick?

How Cheap?

History & Background

Related Links & Sources

Photo credits, from left: AFJD, Stephen Rees via Flickr, Krista Jahnke via Facebook, Stephen Rees via Flickr, Krista Jahnke via FacebookAFJD

Follow VIVA Vancouver

Website: vancouver.ca/viva

Facebook: facebook.com/VivaVancouver

Twitter: @Viva_Van

Pop Rocks
Pop Rocks
Simple amenities like umbrellas and seating make a big impact
Pop Rocks
Pop Rocks, as seen from above
Pop Rocks
Public pillows help transform a street for cars into a place for people
Pop Rocks
Information about the project is displayed for users
Pop Rocks
Pop Rocks
A lively destination even at nighttime
Pop Rocks

*Please note that these Hall of Shame nominations were written in a moment in time (most over a decade ago) and likely have since changed or even been transformed. If the above entry is now great, or still not so great, go ahead and comment below on how it has evolved or nominate it as a great place.

NOMINATE A PLACE

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