“Is there a map?” • Recommendation #34

(The Fourth Wall exhibit has 36 recommendations.  Over the next few weeks, I’ll highlight a few of them….)

Recommendation # 34:  “Better signage and outreach/education materials should be created in our City Hall lobby.”

If a citizen walked into City Hall today looking for some information about our local democracy, they could be excused for thinking they were in the wrong place.  The main floor of 100 Queen Street West is currently configured primarily as a kiosk for developers and an information centre for tourists.

For example, there are 144 different flyers and leaflets available in the front lobby and not a single one of them is about City Hall or municipal government. No ward map. No meeting calendar. No printed materials about Community Councils, Standing Committees or public deputations. Nothing.

Here is a picture of some mock leaflets I designed, to show what they should have at City Hall:

These are the leaflets they DON'T have at City Hall.

A few weeks ago, the nice folks at My City Lives produced a video to highlight the sorry state of our City Hall lobby.  My City Lives is a new project in TO that allows users to geo-tag videos on an interactive map, creating an an “authentic view of your city that is powerful because it is personal—animating the missing link between locations and the people.”

Check out My City Lives for more videos, and check out the Fourth Wall exhibit for more ideas about democratic renewal in Toronto!

NOTE:  In defence of the poor woman who was captured in our ‘hidden camera’ video, I just want to say that she was incredibly helpful and tried her best to give useful answers to my questions.  It’s not her fault that none of the info I was looking for is available in the lobby of our City Hall.


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