My previous project installment mentioned that next step of Streets Without Cars would be to consult the local community on who you are, and what you might want to see happen with the project. Here is the site plan again, showing the residents considered as part of this analysis, and how many agreed to take part in the survey:
The survey dealt with two areas of information, and this entry will deal with the first – demographics – which sought to learn about who this project is to cater for. Here is what was discovered:
Gender, age and ownership
The division of genders and age was fairly even, as expected based on empirical observations. The divide between owners and renters was much more notable however, with an overwhelming majority of households surveyed being the owners of their own homes. This will be interesting when interpreting your thoughts on the future of this project, as it implies many of you will most likely live in the area for the foreseeable future, and therefore feel the impact of such a project more intensely.
Household types and private open space
The typical terrace houses which dominate the area are generally quite large, thus it comes as no surprise that the average number of occupants for a household is nearly three, with families with children being a common household typology. Private spaces were also quite similar across the properties surveyed, with the usages of these spaces also being quite similar. The most surprising result here is the distinct lack of usable spaces adjacent to the street – all of the functional outdoor spaces were located at the rear of each property.
The average length of time each resident has lived in the area was higher than initially expected, but not surprising giving the high number of you who own your own home.
The daily commute
As the area of focus is an inner Melbourne suburb, it comes as no surprise that residents can easily access all parts of Melbourne. The large variety in daily commute destinations suggests that you wholeheartedly take advantage of this centralised location.
Commute transport modes
Despite the close proximity to Richmond railway station and relatively low average commute distance, very few of you indicated that you use public transport, instead opting to drive. This is quite surprising, and will be a key consideration in moving forwards with the planning of this project.
A fairly even distribution of professions was reported, but it didn’t seem to correlate to distance travelled in daily commutes, or to any opinion expressed in the second part of the survey.
To summarise, here are the findings based on this demographic component of the survey:
- There is a fairly even divide of genders and ages throughout the area.
- An overwhelming majority of you own your own home.
- Functional outdoor spaces are a rarity at the front of houses, but very common at the rear of houses.
- Further to this, most outdoor spaces are too small to accommodate anything beyond sedentary activities such as sitting and relaxing or dining. Many rear courtyards also function as car spaces, despite the street offering adequate parking the majority of the time. Residents with children indicated that even with rear courtyards, there wasn’t enough space for the children to play, and instead opted to play at the rear of their properties, where there is significantly less traffic than Stanley or Gipps Streets.
- Driving is the preferred method of transport, despite living in close proximity to Richmond railway station and an average commute distance of only 7.35km.
Coming up next will be the results of what you thought of the street, and how you can see it being improved.
1. Survey respondents, this and subsequent images copyright the author.
2. Gender, age and ownership.
3. Households and private open space.
4. Miscellaneous averages.
5. Commute destinations.
6. Commute transport modes.