When we first got a tip from Andrew Hunter that “someone has installed a new type of bike post along Yonge north of Lawrence,” we were concerned that it might be the vanguard of the Coordinated Street Furniture onslaught of mass-produced uniformity. When we went down (yes, down) to visit the area, however, we were quite relieved to discover not Kramer-designed brontosaurus ribs but elegant, artfully crafted flourishes of metallic whimsy. Inspired by a similar project in which psychiatric survivors designed bike stands for the curb in front of the Parkdale Activity and Recreation Centre (PARC), the Yonge Lawrence Village BIA commissioned two of the artists behind that project, Phil Sarazen and Jack Gibney, to fashion sixteen pieces, each featuring “a different aspect of community living.” Studded into each block on both sides of Yonge Street north from Lawrence to Yonge Boulevard, they succeed in being everything that Astral’s street furniture is not, and should serve as an inspiration to all neighbourhoods and BIAs as to what is possible when you’re willing to invest in your community rather than sell it out.
Photos of eight more after the jump. And, yes, the wheels on the above can be spun.
All photos by Jonathan Goldsbie.