Human-Centred Design / Augemented Reality / UX Design

Location: London, United Kingdom
Status: Ongoing Concept • 2022

Team: Rui Ma, Irene Jia
Sponsors: Westminster City Council, Royal College of Art
Role: Design & Research, Graphics

Activating the under-utilised, secondary spaces around Oxford Street District through a journey of gamifying discovery and collaborative creation.

Born out of a collaboration with the Westminster City Council to better realise their smart cities agenda in and around Oxford Street District (OSD), Side-Quest aims to bring character to underused spaces through interactivity and thereby alleviate stress on Oxford Street.

1.0 // Design Research (HCD)

A rigorous and fascinating series of intercepts and prototype testing informed the initial approach of the project. From VIP chauffeurs and Selfridge salespeople to homeless refugees and local residents, insights were drawn from a wide range of demographics.

2.0 // Contextual Mapping

Deciding to focus on interactive art enhanced by projection mapping, a comprehensive review of the secondary and tertiary spaces off of Oxford Street informed a strategy for creating ‘Discovery Hotspots’ and ‘Leisure Areas’ based on the spatial and programmatic properties of the spaces.

3.0 // Experience Design

Shown here are the day and night experiences of a piece of interactive projection mapping artwork on Ramillies Street, one of the ‘Discovery Hotspots’, produced in collaboration with artists curated by the adjacent Photographers' Gallery.

4.0 // Side-Quest App

While Side-Quest can be experienced in full by any pedestrian chancing by, the accompanying app elevates and unifies the platform. It allows designed interactions with the installation pieces, donations to artists or affiliated causes, discovery of other side-quests, and proposal submissions from local artists.

Here are two scenarios of possible interactions. For example, a donation to the Rainforest Alliance as shown below could trigger an exclusive animation where a tree sprouts from the forest floor.

5.0 // User Journey

As a platform and system for gamified discovery accessible to all, Side-Quest involves many players at various different stages. Notable are the many ways it engages and builds both temporary and permanent communities.

© Sebastian Tam 2022