Urban Observation

1334 Words 6 Pages
Walking the City Exercise: George Street, Central Dunedin According to the Dunedin City Council and the Social Wellbeing Strategy, the city of Dunedin, New Zealand strives for the title, “One of the World’s Great Small Cities.” On Tuesday, the 31st of March, I took the time to walk up and down George Street, a main shopping section of Dunedin. Along my walk, I observed the use of public versus private space, how people act and react to their surroundings, and the relationship between technology, governance, leisure and commerce within the designated space. At 2:00 PM, I began my stroll along George Street, starting from the stairs of Knox Church. It was a sunny afternoon and I took into account all of my surroundings. As I walked, I discovered …show more content…
As you continue down George Street, there is shopping on either sides of the street leading into the Octagon. Walking in this direction, the strategic placement of store location seemed to be more expensive, the closer the proximity to the Octagon center. In regards to human interaction, I observed older couples strolling hand in hand with shopping bags, mothers and their small children peering into window shops that read “SALE,” and groups of teenagers dressed in school uniforms shopping together while texting on their cell phones. Although these groups were not directly interacting with one another, I noticed similarities in their activities of choice in this location and the shared usage of the public space. Based on my observations of George Street and how individuals interact with it, the influence of commerce, leisure shopping and constant access to …show more content…
From my observations, I noticed how many individuals were consumed into their personal mobile devices, rather than paying to their surroundings. According to McQuire, the concept of relational space, or expanding the horizons of social relationships, media cities allow for constant connection and interaction beyond the confines of the city (McQuire, 2008). In a social public space, like George Street, the influence of a media city can create boundaries or borders between these people sharing the same space (McQuire, 2008). In recent attempts to foster these media relationships in the city, the Octagon offers free Wifi access to everyone using the public space. However, as a result of offering the expansion our social relationships through free access, social networks and constant outside connection, people put up these barriers while using media in social

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