"Why Not Stay a Little Longer?": Mobilities, Public Space, and Commuter Culture at York University's Keele Campus
Geographical imagination is fundamentally individualistic and context specific, confined to a given space. Though it has been asserted that the world is experienced by individuals as they move through it and walking has been acknowledged as a powerful method of understanding and valuing space, it is important to recognize how a place can be devalued through constant mobility and become “placeless” (Cresswell, 2006). This placelessness can be achieved through the act of commuting and culture surrounding it, which channels and schedules a specific pattern of mobility (Cresswell & Merriman, 2011). This paper argues that, through the use of an urban intervention, students were enabled and empowered to alter and engage with the York University Campus. The intervention challenged the intended use of Campus Walk, interjected into mundane rhythms of daily commuter life, drew individuals out of their personal technospace into the broader social landscape, and, ultimately, allowed the space to be more than that of “passive mobilities” on a commuter campus.
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