Alongside the principals of bottom-up problem-solving in the urban scale, it was meant to bring an entertaining local game as a vehicle to encourage locals to act towards increasing their physical activity, but also offering them a multi-dimensional urban experience.
At the first stage of the design process, we analyzed different spots of the city in terms of geographic condition, green spaces, air and sound pollution, atmosphere and safety which are directly related to the efficacy of the physical activity performance.
In the case of Tehran, the metropolitan capital, we chose a calm neighborhood near Tavanir, an urban trench that connects two major streets of the city: Valiasr and Yousef Abad.
The most significant characteristic of this area is that regarding the differences of height levels, many stairways have been incorporated into the urban fabric. In other words, taking the stairs is an inevitable routine of the passersby. Therefore, the idea of a game with stairs was an early decision which finally became an “urban snakes and ladders”.
Regarding the fact that Iranian smartphone users are likely to use common applications rather than new startups, we decide to design a (paper) manual for the game instructions. According to the placement of the staircase, a 1:1 field game was set. Thanks to an urban tourism application, Peeyade, the participants are invited to join the start point at a precise time. The manual is available at a green food shop, where players can buy green juice and bio sandwiches. The rules are simple: stairs let you move faster in the field game, however, some of them will force you to move back.