Recap: Story Hour: Tactical Urbanism

September 21, 2015 | | View Comments

by Andrea Fineman, Experience Designer, Adaptive Path


Design Museum SF’s first Story Hour brought together designers, authors, organizers, and policy makers to speak around the concept of Tactical Urbanism. The setting was swissnex San Francisco’s new parklet which welcomes visitors. (Like all San Francisco parklets, it’s open to the public.)

swissnex_parkletSwissnex’s parklet at 730 Montgomer Street by day.


Nathan_John_storyimageNathan John’s community engagement project, NOW_HUNTERS POINT, involved outdoor festival days in conjunction with NPR’s StoryCorps.


Nathan John told us about his experience building a giant outdoor slide for a celebration of Hunter’s Point, in San Francisco’s industrial southeast. Ray Boyle spoke about her experience bringing a block party to one of Portland’s busiest bridges.

Maryanna_storyimageA community garden plot in Berlin’s Tempelhoferfeld.

Maryanna Rogers spoke about community gardens in a former airfield in Berlin. Daphne Gottlieb read a rousing story about Mayor Ed Lee’s stance against public urination.

Ben Davis told his story in bringing the Bay Lights project from idea to reality (it’ll be back on in January) while Benjamin Grant talked about the history of permanence and impermanence in cities. And finally, Andri Bryner, Swissnex’s scientist-in-residence, spoke on his efforts to create a better toilet for developing countries as part of a Gates Foundation initiative.

STY_Tactical_banner_150921Benjamin Grant of SPUR ends the night with his take on permanence and impermanence in cities. Behind Grant is an aerial photo of Florence, a city founded (like many Italian cities, according to Grant) on a temporary military installation.


Special thanks to swissnex San Francisco for an excellent collaboration as well as to our volunteers and attendees. You can see more photos from the event on our Facebook page.

Our next event is our first Meetup is on October 8th at Galvanize where Design Museum staff and supporters will share what’s coming up and how you can get involved!


Andrea Fineman is an experience designer at Adaptive Path and a recent graduate of Carnegie Mellon University’s master’s program in interaction design.