24 hour design challenge


Hosted by Boston’s Institute for Human Centered Design, the All Inclusive Design Challenge lasted 24 hours. Each team will also have a ‘Design Partner,” a person with a disability whose experience on the site of the challenge will determine the opportunity for that team.  The outdoor area chosen is one of the most important destinations for visitors and tourists to Boston: Quincy Market. 


a place to pause

Barbara has been working across the globe for many years as a documentary film maker. Carrying all the equipment has left her with severe back and leg pain. Walking is very difficult and she relies on a cane for stability.  She stopped to rest at three round pillars. She mentioned their use because they were just enough to lean on. Sitting all the way down is difficult because she struggles to stand up again after sitting for a long period of time. 

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An obvious choice

Nick threw out the idea of chairs on fire hydrants. We tabled it. It seemed too wild. But around 11pm we decided to take a walk to clear our minds. We came across 17 hydrants in half a mile.


Final Concept

We named our end product Petal because of its natural, curved shape. It replaces the existing caps on fire hydrants. The hydrants need to be inspected annually and we proposed that the replacement be done as part of that inspection until all are modified. 

The flat edge provides a place to put something down for a moment. The curved piece lets passers by lean and pause. We didn’t want to provide a full stop. We wanted a place where anyone, handicapped or not, could pause and collect themselves.