Pssst- there’s a new movement afoot. Called “guerilla urbanism,” it involves citizens who change their cities without official approval.
Consider Matt Tomasulo: Under cover of darkness, the 30-year-old placed 27 signs at intersections in Raleigh, N.C., advising people how long it takes to walk from one destination to another.
For example, one weatherproof vinyl sign reads, “It’s a 7 minute walk to Raleigh City Cemetery.”
Tomasulo told the Associated Press that his project is, “not telling you to walk. It’s just offering the idea that it’s okay and it is a choice. I think that’s the biggest issue – people just don’t even think about walking as a choice right now.”
The signs were made so well that city officials assumed someone had authorized them. Instead, they were part of Tomasulo’s master’s project in city and regional planning at UNC Chapel Hill. Required to create an advocacy campaign, he imagined “Walk Raleigh,” which was designed to promote healthier communities through walking.
The signs lasted a month before city officials learned of their unsanctioned origin and took them down.
But Tomasulo has heard from people in other countries – Australia, Germany, France and Britain – who are interested.
He’s also developed a website, www.walk-yourcity.com, with a mission: “An online pedestrian empowerment tool for any citizen to become an engaged stakeholder in their community. The W[YC] platform will allow anyone to auto-magically create their own guerrilla wayfinding sign to export, print and install.”
As long as I’m not carrying my groceries for the week, it sounds good to me.