Bus Stops and Inflatables

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Photo by Haily Schmitz

Bus stops and inflatables… these are two things most of us could go our whole lives without thinking about conjunctively. Take a walk downtown this week and you’ll prove that theory wrong.  

Minneapolis artist and designer, Emily Stover (who hosted Popolis at WAM Collective’s Pop-up Park last year), has been working to discover what bus stops have the potential to be. How do they contribute to and promote community engagement in Minneapolis? This thought process has culminated in an individual installation of an inflatable bus at a bus stop outside of Capella Tower downtown.

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Photo by Haily Schmitz

For about the past two weeks or so, continuing into this week, several different organizations have stepped inside the inflatable bus to run different community based programming. Last week one of my classes, Street Life Urban Design Seminar (DES3331), taught by landscape designer and tactical urbanist Carrie Christensen, spent an afternoon at the bus stop trying to engage the riders and experiment with different types of activities within the installation. 

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Photo by Haily Schmitz

We created paper doll bus templates for riders and passersby to color and create within the inflatable bus. We also created a map for people to pinpoint where they come from or where they may be going. Both programs aimed to get the community more involved with one another while walking through downtown or waiting for a bus.

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Photo by Haily Schmitz

It was really cool to be a part of something like this and to see people branching out of their comfort zones to get involved. If you have a spare hour this week take a quick trip downtown to see the inflato bus in action for yourself! Step out of your own comfort zone and what it means to engage with others outside of campus!

Getting to the Inflatable Bus Stop from Campus: Take the Green line to Government Plaza, walk one block south east to S 6th St.

Haily Schmitz I study Architecture in the College of Design here at the U, along with a minor in Urban Studies. I love traveling, food, and everything creative. Outside of my work here you might find me serving tables out on Lake Minnetonka, jamming to some hot tunes, or more likely snuggled in bed with my Boston Terriers Oliver and Luna. I’m excited to work with the WAM Collective and bring more creativity and artful thinking to students on campus!

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