Creating Safer Spaces
Creating Safer Spaces
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Our recent research into what makes people feel safer in urban spaces has revealed a wealth of insight on this important topic.
Sign up for a CPD session on Creating Safer Spaces, where we can delve into the insights and outline seven key design considerations to help improve public safety. Perfect for anyone involved in the design and build of any public realm scheme.
We’re encouraging planners, designers, architects and local councils to consider a set of key design principles when it comes to creating public spaces so users feel – and are – safe using them after dark as well as during the daylight.
Our Creating Safer Spaces white paper has been developed using insight from research which showed that:
- 80% of people feel more unsafe after dark in public spaces and are 12 times more likely to avoid certain areas during these times
- People are 40 times more likely to avoid a park or garden after dark compared with during the daylight – they deem these to be the least safe spaces once the sun sets
- Young people considering their safety more regularly than older people; almost 70% of those under 21 think about safety all the time, compared to just 10% of over 60s
- 84% of women feel more unsafe when out and about alone compared with 44% of men, gay men are twice as likely to have safety on their minds compared with heterosexual men, and 43% of those with disabilities say they worry about their safety some or all of the time, compared to 27% overall.
The Creating Safer Spaces white paper
The white paper, created in partnership with the Landscape Institute, highlights the significant difference between how the public view spaces in the daylight versus after dark, and outlines a series of design pillars to encourage architects, designers, planners and others in the industry to consider to ensure safety is integrated into public spaces.
The paper also explores the reasons for the public’s heightened awareness of safety after dark. People cited poor visibility as an issue, whereby potential dangers or hazards are concealed or out of sight. A lack of ‘social presence’ from less use of spaces by people after dark was also raised as a reason for safety concern with an associated increase in anti-social behaviour. The findings also noted a perception that more crime takes place at after dark. This highlights the importance of the notion of designing for the dark.
Covering principles from vision and wayfinding, to acoustics and technology, we’re encouraging the industry to use these considerations to provoke fresh thinking and debate.