NEWS

Robson redux: city looks for ideas for Robson Street closure

01/12/2015 01:40 EST | Updated 03/14/2015 05:59 EDT
The City of Vancouver is holding a design competition for the 800 block of Robson street this coming summer.

In the past five summers, the 800-block of Robson Street has been home to everything from giant bean bags to super-curvy benches. It has also been home to controversy, as the city closes the block to vehicles to create a public plaza — to the frustration of many drivers.

Once again, the City of Vancouver is holding a design competition for a large public installation to occupy Robson Street.

"What we're looking for is people to be connecting with it, interacting with it, enjoying that space and perhaps be around that space more," said Cheryl Nelms, Director of Projects and Quality Management.

Regular Robson Street busker "Tim the Enchanted" says he's a fan of the project, because it creates a sense of community. But he's not as enthused about last year's benches, which he called "very silly."

"They were like slats. People would sit for three, five minutes and then go," he said.

"Whoever got paid the big bucks for those silly slat seats last year, I hope the design company went kaphooey!"

The Robson Redux competition budgets up to $40,000 to build the installation, and offers a $5000 honourarium to the winning design team. 

Architects, artists and designers are invited to submit proposals by February 13, but must register by January 20. Interested parties can attend an info session at the Vancouver Art Gallery on January 11.

On mobile? Click here to see a video of the 2014 Robson Redux winning design.

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