The goal of my thesis year in The School of Visual Art’s Products of Design program was to develop empathy between pedestrians and bicyclists. I wanted to influence the design of our cities to curb the use of private automobiles whenever possible (which I believe is almost all the time by the way) but the implications of my research and prototyping go beyond transportation. Influenced by a Danish mobilities researcher named Ole Jensen I began looking at “movement as meaning”. Jensen extends traditional urban design principles to look beyond what he refers to as “the view from above” characterized by the goals and hypotheses of Urban Planners, Politicians, and Traffic Engineers, and encourages us to take a “view from below” which takes shape in the way people move within our built environment. WE make the meaning of our environment by how we move through it, our environment is not simply CREATED for us by the planners and builders who assume our best interests. The Anarchy of the Imagination explored the concept of “shared space” which several European cities have experimented with over the past 20 years. A “shared space” intersection jettisons signage, signals, and barriers requiring drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists to “negotiate in motion”. The concept was developed in the Netherlands by Hans Monderman and pushes hard against traditional traffic planning which advocates separation and control as the primary means to create safety. According to Pieter de Haan, a psychologist at the University of Applied Sciences in the Netherlands, ”Shared space creates a little bit of confusion, which forces you to communicate with others.” Shared space has recently been covered in the United States in a New York Times op-ed by Roger Cohen on April 2nd, 2015 and a Fast Company article by Jessica Leber, “Why Cities Around the World are Suddenly Ditching Traffic Lights” that highlights a pilot program in Chicago. Can New Yorkers learn to share our spaces and be more present with others around us? I was determined to find out. I wanted to shatter the belief that we are all entitled to our own space and instead instill a sense that space is for everyone. We share this planet, we share this city. We share these streets. Imagine a radical new world where we all share space. It’s not chaos. It’s cooperative. It’s nurturing. We can do it together! Welcome to The Anarchy of your own imagination . . .