Prototype: Project Welcome Mat

What if we improve the sidewalk space in front of Boyle Street Community Services to facilitate human connection, destigmatize service, and provide dignity to vulnerable people? If we improve this sidewalk space, would we improve relationships both within and beyond Boyle Street Community Services?

Short Term - consult people who hang out on the sidewalk in front of Boyle Street Centre to find out about the needs for this outdoor space, and then engage community members to help remake the space to make it function better, be more attractive, and invite other users.

Longterm - a kind of Sidewalk Improvement Program that extends to all service providers.


Who was this designed for?

Primary target user group: Boyle Street Community Services - community members and staff

Secondary target user group: the larger surrounding community


There are many people of all ages and abilities who gather on the sidewalk spaces in front the Boyle Street Centre. There is minimal infrastructure to support the people using this space.  It lacks people-friendly features and greenery, resulting in a feeling of neglect and tension.

What's Next?

  • Evaluate what was used and how, as well as the impact
  • Look for long-terms solutions that make sense for the community and allow for co-creation
  • Consult community members
  • Explore ways to collaborate regarding options for programming the space
  • Explore creation of a pilot Sidewalk Improvement Program similar to the City’s Facade Improvement Program

Our Team

Elliott Tanti: Boyle Street Community Services
Helen Herbert: Boyle Street Community Services
Ian O’Donnell: Downtown Business Association
Shafraaz Kaba: Manasc Isaac
Robert Lipka: City of Edmonton
Dorian Smith: City of Edmonton
Jeff Chase: City of Edmonton
Sue Holdsworth: City of Edmonton