Gehl Architects, AAU CPH


January 2020 - July 2020


Service Design

Who should design our cities? In the second semester of the master's service systems design, Gehl Architects asked us to explore how we could approach urban planning from a service design perspective. Gehl Architects starts each project with observation in the city. How do people move through the city? In what locations do they stay for a while?

We took Jan Gehl's famous observation approach a step further in our project: can we co-create cities with its citizens? Based on a focus group, observations in the town, and trend analysis, we have developed a toolkit capturing the values of citizens. In this case, the values revolved around air pollution in the city. Urban planners can use the toolkit to create cities suiting the citizens and invite them into the design process.

The video above shows a rough sketch of the concept in the early stages. The Insights Playground (the toolkit) ended up as an online platform including exercises meant to empathise with citizens. COVID-19 made it hard to co-create with citizens, so we worked to include their values in urban planning despite their absence..