The Benefits of the Cul De Sac


I have begun to divert slightly from looking at walls or obstacles that create dead ends to the one way street or road itself. In my research I found PlayingOut, that I believe to have potential in creating life on these streets. Below is a description of PlayingOut that is taken from their website.

Playing Out is a model by which residents of a street can close their street to through traffic for a couple of hours, creating a safe space for children to play out.

As Dead Ends and Cul De Sacs dont really have through traffic, I thought they would be the perfect place to stage a Play Street.

I have created a map as shown above that highlights all the dead ends in the vicinity of the site as well as all the parks and playing fields. The problem however with designated parks and playing fields is that unless parents willingly allow their children to visit the parks unsupervised, they are often left under used till the typical weekend peak.

Parks do however play a vital role in connecting children with other unrelated children however this is often a passing occurrence with the children often seeing separate ways after its time to go home.

On the other end of the scale, gardens are also seen as amenity spaces for the sake of child play however this is usually only accessible for the immediate families and very close friends and family.

It has therefore been that streets have been the perfect middle ground for the child as it keeps them close to home where mum can shout them for tea and where they can play with children other than passing children or cousins.

Although this natural tradition has long been ongoing, nowadays parents are more and more apprehensive of letting their children play out front due to the danger cars and traffic possess. Dead Ends and Cul de Sacs are thus inherently beneficial as the problem of through traffic is less severe.  I will further continue this investigation to look into how this issue can be resolved with possible propositions.


Children hacking the lamp post as a swing.


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