Category Archives: Identity

Design for Diversity – Tap local talent/diversify your team

design for diversity tap local talent

At OpenCity, we have spent the last seven years learning about what motivates diverse people to spend time in a place and connect with others. Design for Diversity is a new way of viewing, planning and designing public space through a lens of inclusion and diversity. Over the coming weeks we will unpack the Design for Diversity manifesto to ease planners and city lovers into the practice.  Continue reading

Design for Diversity – Why does it matter?


Turn on the news these days and you are likely to see stories about migration and diversity in cities that often lead to tension rooted in racial and cultural differences. An increasing number of people are migrating for a range of social, economic, political and environmental reasons. It is critical for cities, and those who love and live in them, to find ways to be more welcoming to newcomers, to be more inclusive, and design with diversity in mind. If they don’t, we face spreading intolerance, and potentially, outright xenophobia.

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Design for Diversity Manifesto


Since 2006, OpenCity Projects has showcased how excellent public spaces and urban design help make our cities more beautiful, diverse, sustainable, and inclusive.

We have often looked to Toronto for inspiration. It’s a city of newcomers, where immigration is embraced and where almost 50% of its population have been born outside Canada. Here we’ve seen that when people mix together and integrate well with each other and their spaces everyone can live and grow together, peacefully.

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Cultural Perceptions

Final Zaraeeb - Edited

Perception, a new “calligraffiti” project by artist eL Seed, questions the judgement and misconceptions society can have on a community based on their perceived differences. The anamorphic piece covers almost 50 buildings in Cairo’s Coptic neighbourhood of Zaraeeb – a community responsible for the city’s trash and recycling collection. Despite the immeasurable public service made by the area, the place is perceived as dirty, marginalized and segregated. With the help of locals, the artist and his team developed a project to shed a positive light to the community. Continue reading

The Most Stylish Gas Station in LA

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In an era where they only pump your gas in New Jersey, the glory days of the gas station seem extinct – the task and the place, monotonous. But even in Los Angeles, a city of stars, it’s quite a surprise to see this geometric gem. At the corner of Olympic and Robertson lies the most stylish gas station in LA. Continue reading

Dear World… Yours, Cambridge – Miguel Chevalier


Artist Miguel Chevalier recently created a series of immersive projections that added a spellbound layer to a University of Cambridge charity event. The fundraising occasion featured Chevalier’s designs front and center in the King’s College Chapel, as they wrapped the historic interior in a myriad of changing colours, patterns, and textures. It was a striking juxtaposition that fused contemporary imagery with 16th-century Gothic English architecture—a mashup of old and new that brought the building to life. Continue reading

Brandalism takes over the COP21 climate talks


Over 600 artworks critiquing the corporate takeover of the COP21 climate talks were installed in advertising spaces across Paris ahead of the United Nations summit beginning on November 30th. Amidst the French state of emergency banning all public gatherings following the terrorist attacks on 13 November in Paris, the Brandalism project has worked with Parisians to insert unauthorised artworks across the city that aim to highlight the links between advertising, consumerism, fossil fuel dependency and climate change. Continue reading