Think Public Space
Work title: Urban Barcode
Public space is the main platform where the urban culture is generated. In this platform, citizens express themselves in the society in many aspects such as social, political and economic aspects. For that reason, interaction and communication are the key elements in the production of public space. With this conception, this project proposes a new kind of communication and interaction in public space. Considering the zeitgeist of information age, it renders a multi-dimensionary public space that both adapts physically and communicates virtually. It works as communicative agent between citizens and also between different cities. In this sense, although it is designed for the Victory Square of Ankara, it is related with the City Of Zagreb.
The Victory Square of Ankara is in Sıhhiye, very close to the city centre, Kızılay. This square carries a great meaning for the reason that it is designed to symbolize values of the Republic. This square is divided by Atatürk Boulevard that is enlarged following the urban growth. Its one side is used as a park whereas the other side is used as a city square. This area is chosen with respect to its closeness to city centre and its need of revitalization.
The project, namely Urban Barcode is a digitally controlled kinetic urban system that takes shape according to diverse activities. It consists of two types of kinetic semi-boxes (3x7m and 4.5x9m) that organized to move linearly on a rail system. The combinations of the semi-boxes generate a barcode-like image as an expression of activities taking place. And this barcode-like image can be detected both visually in physical reality and also digitally thanks to the sensor systems attached to semi-boxes. After the detection, the generated barcode is loaded to the website of the public space. Later on it is possible to connect to the website through smart phones, tablets and etc. just by taking a front photo of the whole structure. Citizen will be directly led to the event agenda of the day. So that Urban Barcode as a continuously changing entity generates imagery related to its history.
Besides generating a barcode-like image, thanks to the attached screens to the walls of the semi-boxes, this structure behaves like a giant sectional screen. The image reflected to the screens flies to pieces and joins to the city. These reflections can diversify such as art videos, older event videos, and simultaneous videos of events reflecting the citizens in the area. In addition, other urban barcode’s event videos can also be reflected on screens. For instance a video of an event of Zagreb’s Urban Barcode can be reflected on the screens of Ankara’s Urban Barcode. Thusly a network is created between different cities and a bridge is built between different cultures.
For the reason that Urban Barcode is a kinetic structure and it is not fixed to a place permanently, it has an autonomous energy system within it. On the roof of the semi-boxes, solar panels are located. The energy gained from solar panels is transferred to the accumulators that are placed within the walls. The screens and the motors, that make the semi-boxes move, provide their power from the accumulators.
Urban Barcode is controlled by a civil society organization who organizes the events that will take place. It both organizes events and accepts applications of people from different sections of society for organizing events. The citizens can comment on events, vote for the event proposals and apply to organize an event upon website.
The design of the Urban Barcode approaches to public space from two perspectives:
-Communication between cities
(reflecting other cities’ urban barcode events in public space, connecting other cities’ urban barcode upon a worldwide network)
-Communication within the city
(considering the citizens participation to events and their organization of events in public space both physically and virtually)
In relation to these two perspectives, Urban Barcode project aims to re-conceptualize the format of establishing relationships and the scope of these relationships. It inquiries into the way the citizens be in existence in public space in the information age.