Central Park<br>Arch Project

PROBLEM

In 2014 two pedestrians were killed in separate incidents where bicycles crashed into them while crossing Central Park’s loop drive.

Proposed Central Park Map

THE PROCESS

Research:
Studied arches in Central Park which were initially designed to separate forms of traffic so that carriages, riders on horseback, and pedestrians would not have to cross in front of each other. Found three arches were demolish in early 20th Century that could be restored. Learned specifics about crash sites.

Iterate:
Created a written proposal restoring arches near collision sites..

Validate:
Submitted to government officials to gauge interest. One official responded enthusiastically and offered to set up meetings with others.

Research:
Created and chaired a committee of people in construction, design, marketing, and with city park experience to determine next steps.

Iterate:
Created a promotional video and petition for the project.

Validate:
Outreach through social media got us some initial press.

Research:
Created a public walk to take stakeholders through the park to share our idea and learn from them. We discovered arches in the park that were underutilized.

Iterate:
Created a full fledged website and logo, defined our mission and clarified our messaging.

Validate:
Submitted to press. We were featured in The Atlantic: City Labs, Curbed, Hyperallergic, and The Brian Leher Show. Our video accumulated 10,000 views on Youtube.

Research:
Gathered input from family of one of the victims, architects, city agencies, and advocacy groups.

Iterate:
Created a map and Powerpoint presentation.

Validate:
Presented the idea to community boards, the Borough President, Parks Department, the park conservancy, and others.

Research:
Created a coalition to partner with interested groups outside of Central Park Arch Project

Iteration Currently Under Way:
Creating a new proposal with the coalition utilizing our extensive body of research and stakeholder input.

Key Digital Strategies

Logo

The initial logo was done by the talented Rob Rainone who fashioned it after an artistic embellishment found on one of the park’s arches. He made it look like a blueprint with Nineteenth Century Gothic text. We decided it should have a contemporary feel to make the project feel current and possible. Stephanie Houle brought it into the 21st Century.

Content & Infastructure

The first proposal was structured around locations on a map while our video told a story and was organized by chronology. The website needed to convey our mission quickly and succinctly. We defined the mission as “Restore Arches, Revise Pathways, Save Lives” and built around that. We added call to actions throughout the site.

Video

In a Vine and Buzzfeed world, it’s easy to believe that people can’t pay attention for more than seven seconds but you’re setting the bar low if you expect so little attention. We created a video with a strong intro hook that followed up with a compelling story about a carefully laid plan abandoned due to hubris then finished with a strong ask.

What they say

“Many advocates feel that a safer park won’t truly be possible until the park’s design is more deeply reconsidered… The arches were there for a reason. No harm in bringing them back.”

Laura Bliss, The Atlantic: CityLab

“19th-Century arches could be the key to Central Park’s safety.”

Hana R. Alberts, Curbed

“[Achieving] Vision Zero (a plan to eliminate crashes in New York City) might mean restoring some of Central Park’s original beauty.”

Brian Lehrer, host of WNYC’s Brian Lehrer Show

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FALBER CREATIONS
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