During my vacation week in Sydney and the work month spent in Perth, I definitely missed being out after the sun has gone down and seeing crowds in rush hour – and by ‘crowds’ I mean flocks of people to whom personal space is nonexistent. But what I miss about Australia, aside from Sydney’s swanky harbour restaurants and Perth’s polished transport systems, is its value for design.
Walking down my everyday route to work or the nearest Woolies, and seeing quirky statues of sorts made me realize how design plays an important role in young cities such as those of Australia’s. Such cities have the opportunity to define their identity by placing life-sized kangaroos on their sidewalks, for instance. Or how about statues of men in suits off to work in the CBD? Or maybe street performers frozen to a handstand on a shopping strip?
Apart from these visual candies, design is very much evident in the way the cities have been laid out – and is being laid out. Being first world has to be charged to something after all. For now, I’m just looking forward to how the Perth City Link turns out to be in a few years.