Shared space

In this £30 million urban design project on Exhibition Road, London, UK, pavements and roads have been merged to create a shared space. Shared spaces have become a design fad adopted by many localities in the UK and world wide, and are designed to provide no particular priority to road users but, instead, to encourage an inter mingling of uses and users. This particularly scheme is unpopular with many vision impaired people for designing out legible fixtures and fittings that, ordinarily, enable their means of way finding. Instead, shared space increases the degrees of danger to vision impaired people, by reducing certainty as to where they are, and by not providing safe spaces such as clearly demarcated and separate pavements that cars are unable to access.

Imrie, R., (2012), ‘Auto-disabilities’: the case of shared space environments, Environment and Planning A, 44, 2260 – 2277.