Ebbsfleet with you
How might we feel equal
ownership of the changes?
“By dramatically rethinking urbanism and its governance. That means designing cities for people, not cars; allowing everyone access to urban opportunities”. This is a leading principle for a major investment by the UK government – accounting ~£10B – to transform Ebbsfleet into a “Garden City”.
Our work with Ebbsfleet Development Corporation (EDC) indicated that, to achieve a real sense of ownership of the change, we needed to emphasise equality and demonstrate transparency in decision-making. We opted for a digital service that implements a vote-based system in which residents allocate their pool of votes between suggested development options, and express their thoughts and concerns. We created “Ebbsfleet with you”, a digital platform – that spans web, mobile and AR– on which all residents can regularly express their priorities for Ebbsfleet’s development, and see how their opinions are affecting the future of the area.
Under development in partnership with EDC, Go Local project (2020), Ebbsfleet-London.
We developed a framework for urban development initiatives, including maturity, category, implementation considerations and stakeholder sentiment. This framework will be used to guide the pipeline of initiative consultation, app navigation, and vote mechanics.
For low-maturity ideas, users are able to engage digitally with information and visuals. For mature ideas, users can use AR to view development initiatives in context and provide granular feedback. We believe that AR will help offset the pain of long-lead-time projects by making initiatives feel real and valorising a positive dialogue. Accessibility was a priority, as some groups are hard to reach during co-design. So, we developed strategies to engage the young, the elderly, and the economically disadvantaged.