Placemaking Piccadilly is a community arts campaign led by Get It Done and Manchester Central Foodbank, striving for a new vision for Piccadilly Gardens and Manchester's public spaces; a vision that meets the needs of its citizens and is inclusive to all, especially to those facing inequalities.
OUR KEY ASK
We would like the Council, Piccadilly architects, cultural institutions, and key services to commit institutional support and capacity on a long-term basis to developing a community-led, participatory ‘platform’ in Piccadilly Gardens, with spaces, installations, programmes, and services specifically set aside for, and co-designed with, grassroots organisations, charities, and community groups throughout Manchester.
Piccadilly Gardens is a major focal point of Mancunian public space and a site of protest, outreach, engagement and support. Piccadilly Gardens can be a place for celebration; an emblem of Manchester. But the gardens also shine a spotlight on Manchester’s social inequalities, including homelessness, poverty, begging, drug use and crime.
Piccadilly is a space that, for many, doesn't feel comfortable. It's a melting pot of everything that Manchester encompasses... but also nothing too. The space doesn't feel like it belongs to the citizens and is more of a transitory space; a space to survive through, and not enjoy.
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MEET THE PARTNERS
As part of the wider Can You Hear Me Now? project, we have begun a branch of the campaign focused on public space and inequalities.
Using Piccadilly Gardens to open up discussions, we want to highlight the insights of diverse communities around Manchester. Through consulting community groups, running creative workshops and events and a collaborative tapestry with artist Freya Bruce, we aim to influence decision making around public space and promote a vision for central Manchester that is inclusive to all despite deepening inequalities in the city.
The campaign coincides with Manchester City Council’s commission of a public consultation into a redesign of the square. From our conversations, we will present our findings through a research journal and comprehensive exhibition to the council by the end of 2021, backed by a coalition of organisations and charities fighting for social change in our city.
"Placemaking means creating places, and transforming public spaces to strengthen the connections between people and these places. Placemaking is a process centred on people and their needs, aspirations, desires and visions, which relies strongly on community participation."
Who has ownership over our Manchester public spaces; is it the council or the citizens? Are public spaces in Manchester representative of the communities that make up the city? And how would you change our spaces for the better?
Discussing Piccadilly Gardens questions the role of the 'public square' within the 21st century city and how diverse and underrepresented peoples' insights should be considered throughout the planning of space and provision of services.
How can we create a public space that's inclusive to all?
BUT HOW DO
WE MAKE IT FEEL...
WHAT WE'RE UP TO
Whether you are part of a community group or an individual who wants their opinions to be heard, if you are interested in joining our Piccadilly Placemaking project please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For any further information on the project and press releases please contact Mimi at email@example.com.
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